How do I get who I am on the inside out??

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    I am new to Buddhism and would appreciate any help or advice. I am having trouble actually getting myself to do the things I want to do and be the person I want to be. I don’t know how to get how I feel on the inside to the outside. Inside I am full of love, compassion, and acceptance. Inside I feel happy and am who I want to be. On the outside however, I am a very dulled down version of these things. I want to be fully connected with how I feel on the inside but for some reason I find it difficult. Maybe it is because a fear of being different or the fear of being mocked by my peers. Maybe it is because I lack a certain motivation. I’m not sure. I feel like I am missing the one thing that will really kick me to become who I want to be. Every time I have tried to be myself I have been made fun of and shot down for being a person who shows actual emotion. The people around aren’t open enough to accept me or support me on this journey. I just want to be a better person and people either think I am joking or laugh at me for being “cheesy” or “corny”. I have a lot more to say but I feel like this is getting off topic. Anyways, I’d love and appreciate any advice anyone would like to give. Thank you!!

    • This topic was modified 7 years ago by dom.

    Dear dom;

    You are afraid to be you, to express your authentic emotions because you were mocked before and that hurt. So now you are afraid and that is understandable.

    Can you give examples to how you were yourself, specifically and how that brought about being made fun of?

    I would like to look more into this and an example or two can help me.



    For example, if I were to say to my friends “I’m so glad to have you guys in my life, you all mean a lot to me!” I would get the reply “ew” or they would just laugh. They don’t show emotions and don’t talk about things other than the surface. If I were to ask “How are you?” or say “If you ever need anything you can talk to me!” or “Hope you have a good day, you deserve it!” pretty much anything very positive they shoot down. They can’t have serious conversations and it is difficult for me because I know they are great people and I do care for them very much but I don’t feel like I can be myself around them. Maybe they are uncomfortable with showing their own genuine emotions so they don’t know how to respond to mine? I don’t know why someone wouldn’t want their friend to tell them they care about them.


    I think if we look at this closely its not so much about you having problems letting the real you out, you’ve already shown you can do this it’s more about acceptance of this.

    Everyone will question a personality change, if the quiet person goes to loud overnight people will ask why the change – its all about consistency. If you continue to show empathy consistently they will adjust their mental picture slowly to the new you. IF then reverted they would then question that again.

    My recommendation is be true to yourself its when you are the most happiest, your friends will adjust slowly so give them time and your empathy will spread, you may find some of your friends show more also. Compassion is infectious!

    There are many quotes or articles on this, but in a brief line stay true to you and let them say what they will, they will change slowly if they are your true friends but just don’t expect it overnight.



    • This reply was modified 7 years ago by Richard. Reason: spelling

    Hi dom,

    Maybe it’s a simple solution: “Show me don’t tell me”. Because when we try to put these feelings into words, let’s face it, it CAN sound cheesy!! Maybe a head noogie or a punch on the shoulder, or an “I love you guys!!” while you put ice cubes down their back would be more this crowd’s speed. You know?

    Like when my friend’s mother died, instead of saying “I’m here for you, whenever you need me, call anytime, I love you” I said, “We got you,” while giving her a bear hug.




    Dear dom:

    I appreciate your examples, they do help me understand. And your understanding that “Maybe they are uncomfortable with showing their own genuine emotions so they don’t know how to respond to mine? ” is what I think as well. True in my experience!

    The world is in the sad state that it is and so many, many people are not well because people are not … healthy, not authentic, not genuine. This is the world we live in, unfortunately. Somehow you still have that love for others that we are all born having but most people lost it, or are very careful about it, scared of being hurt… like you, you are scared too, only you still love others.

    What to do..? I am thinking as I type this, that if those expressions of your genuine empathy for others are rejected as they have been, then with those people, no reason to invite their rejection, you already know their response. Also in groups certain people behave differently than in one-to-one with you. Peers are probably conscious of how others see them and they want to appear macho and strong and they wrongly think it means not being emotional.

    What do you think so far? I have more thoughts but need your input at this point…



    Hello Dom,
    I’ve never heard this question expressed this way before: “how do I get who I am on the inside out?” Interesting way to think of it! I’m giving you a different perspective than the responses above – see if it helps; if not, ignore me πŸ™‚

    If you’re starting to get into spirituality (since you mentioned you’re getting into Buddhism) you’re probably starting to hear about the two parts of us – the Human side of us and the Being side of us. The human side of us is the body, mind and form, which is quite immersed in the earthly life, including our friends, food, jobs, relationships, health, etc. But then there’s the Being side of us – the intangible deeper part of us – the soul, or the inner being, that’s all about joy and freedom and lightness.

    The reason it’s so hard to bring who you are on the inside out is because the human side of us is so heavy, dense and quite controlled by the society around us. As soon as your sensitive, compassionate inner being gets ridiculed for its joy and compassion, it recedes inside back into its cocoon.

    If you want to continue on your spiritual path, you must continue to stay in touch with that compassionate, joyful inner being. Whether you want to express it in words or not doesn’t matter – your friends around you are probably just not ready for that side of you. If they appreciate that side of you, they’ll stick around and stay with you; if not those friendships will dissolve. But don’t be deterred from your path because of their reactions. As you grow into becoming who you really are on the inside, the world around you will change accordingly!

    • This reply was modified 7 years ago by Saiisha.

    I know how you feel. With friends and family I’m the perfect version of me, once I’m out in public I become a cynical closed off person [due manly to my brain thinking people in the town believe that’s who I am. Long story but it’s a vicious cycle I can’t break out of. So I’m moving!] Try taking baby steps. When you make eye contact with someone, smile. [I’m not one to constantly smile but I smile at everyone I lock eyes with] you could also try asking someone how there day is going and actually mean it [as a barista I can’t tell you how wonderful it feels when someone seriously wants to know how your day is instead of a formality] you could also try being more charitable. Nothing major, maybe donate one can of soup a week, or throw a quarter into a street performers hat.

    I think it comes down to self-esteem/self-confidence, you fear rejection so you project half of yourself to the outside world, which shields you from real rejection if someone doesn’t like this fake you. Try making small goals for yourself each day to slowly ease yourself out. And if someone doesn’t like the real you, forget them! As long as you’re happy that’s all that counts! [Easier said than done I know]


    Hi Dom,

    I don’t know how long you have been on Tiny Buddha or if you are subscribed to the daily inspirational emails. If you are, the consistent message is that you’re OK the way you are! This is coming from someone who is on the other side of the fence…meaning someone who has retired from the rat race but still looking for the answers you are. One of the clear messages I have received is that if you have “friends” that can’t accept you for yourself, then they are not friends. When I look back over my friendships, I regret wasting time on people who weren’t supportive of me and blowing off those who would probably have been my best advocates. I regret that I didn’t understand this at an earlier age…but it’s never too late!

    We have to be our own cheerleaders first, so get your pom-poms and start cheering for you. Stop worrying about what other’s think about you and be happy with you! I strongly suggest you use the inspirational stories on Tiny Buddha to help you on your journey.


    What I have discovered about myself is, I used to have feelings of embarrassment & shame when, I would try to discuss anything that I was feeling.My then friends, would either mock me, crack a joke or look at me as something was wrong with me. I spent years pretending to be someone I was not. After multiple drug treatments, I slowly begin to realize that there was a lot going that I was not aware of and had been living my life the only way I have ever known and there are people who I can be myself around. I have since begin to not care as much about what others think of me, after all we have only one life to live and I cannot waste any more time worrying so much about how others see me. Along this journey I have found that my past friends, (I still do talk with some of them) have changed as well and the ones who have not our conversions are usually kept to what they have been doing and I share with them how my life has changed.



    No matter who or what you want to be, before you can even take that step, it’s wise to understand who you are in this moment. Only once you have embraced the current you can you figure out where your heading. Because, you never know, you may already be who you want to be, and your mind is playing tricks on you. I always felt like I couldn’t support myself because i still live at home with my parents in my mid 20s. But then i went traveling and lived abroad for a little while. I noticed that i was always capable, i just hadn’t had the perspective nor the experience to tell me so. Don’t think about changing your life to suit others, nor change who you are just yet. How about flipping the picture upside down, and see what you got? πŸ˜‰ good luck/

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