To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself. ~Thich Nhat Hanh
Many people I talk with feel that they have no joy in their life. They feel obligated to do so many things that they don’t have time for themselves and the things they really want to do.
As a result, they feel drained, anxious, and resentful. With so many outside forces competing for their time, energy, and financial resources, is it really any wonder they feel this way?
So what do we do? How can we remain balanced among this sea of obligations and commitments?
The answer is to live consciously. By looking at each decision we are making and by asking ourselves, “Is this really what I want to be doing? Is this really what is right for me?” And then by making sure our actions stay in alignment with our true intentions.
Saying yes when we mean no often causes us not to trust ourselves. It damages our confidence and lowers our self-esteem.
So why do we do it?
From a young age, we are conditioned to act in certain ways in order to feel loved and accepted. This is the beginning of our loss of personal power and authenticity.
In order to create change, we will need to recondition our beliefs by discovering what is really true for us.
These are the questions I ask myself to become aware of any patterns and beliefs that no longer work for me. Once you become aware of these beliefs, you can simply begin to consciously change them.
Ask yourself: “Why am I doing this? Is it because…”
- I will feel guilty if I don’t?
- Everyone else is doing it, so I should too?
- I want others to think I am a nice person?
- I want to feel accepted?
- I don’t feel good enough about myself to do what is really right for me?
- I have trouble saying “no” or being myself around certain people?
If you have said “yes” to any of the above questions, you are cheating yourself out of the things that bring you happiness and joy!
The next time you hear yourself saying, I love to garden…but I don’t have time or I love to golf…but I’m too busy remember you can choose differently. You can choose to believe you are valuable; what is right for you does matter, and that your happiness is a priority.
Your life is the culmination of each decision you make every moment (whether you are aware of what you are choosing or not).
Begin to understand the intention behind every action you take and make a conscious decision to do only what is right for you. Gather the courage each moment and say “no” to anything or anyone that doesn’t allow you to be yourself, or to live in alignment with your dreams.
What will you choose? Will you choose to stay in power by acting with the knowledge that you are responsible for every action in your life? Or will you continue to give your power away in order to feel valued and accepted in the eyes of another?
The choice is yours.
Photo by daz smith