What is Holding You Back from Living Your Truth?
Rev. Dr. Kitty Boitnott, NBCT, RScP
Heart-Centered Career Transition and Job Search Coach | Stress Management Coaching
Many people--perhaps too many--go their whole lives without expressing themselves fully or authentically. We live in fear of other people's judgment and criticism. As a result, we tend to hide our true selves and fail to live as freely as we might like.
The trouble is that hiding behind some chosen facade rather than living authentically isn't good for us. It harms our sense of self and our total well-being. It can even damage our relationships.
It can even harm our health.
I want you to think about what it would mean for you to live your truth and fully embrace your authentic self. I would also ask you to consider why you might be holding yourself back if you feel that you aren't living as authentically as you would like. Ask yourself the questions below to see if there is a hint there.
1) Might it be the people with whom you spend the most time?
Sometimes we let the closest people limit us in expressing our whole, authentic selves. You may feel a lot of pressure to behave in a certain way to gain someone's approval. That someone may be a parent. Lord knows that parent-child relationships are fraught with complicated dynamics. Parents have lots of expectations of their children, and if they don't meet those expectations, it can create a whole host of problems.
Do you feel you have to hide some crucial part of yourself to be accepted by your family? Unfortunately, many individuals from the LGBQT+ community think that they have to hide their true selves. Thankfully, that is changing to some degree today, but it is a change that is slow in coming. Some families are shunning too many kids for coming out and telling their truth.
It's causing teens to run away from home. It's responsible for the fact that 40% of gay teens consider suicide and many other issues that are problematic for our society. The world would be a much better place if we could all just let each other live their truth without judgment.
2) Is it possible that you generally dislike other people?
Is it possible that you don't like other people that much? If so, that may be the result of projection. You may not like something about another person that you secretly don't like about yourself.
Perhaps you don't like other people because you are secretly afraid that they won't like you if they knew the "real" you. Is there something about yourself that you are having a hard time accepting? Perhaps it's time to take a serious look at whatever it is, make peace with it, and stop making other people the brunt of your dislike.
3) Is a fear of failure or the fear of making a mistake holding you back?
The fear of failure is a major stumbling block for many people.
No one likes to fail.
But perhaps it's time to reframe what failure looks like for you.
Consider that no one makes it through life without making mistakes along the way. It isn't a failure that defines you. It's how you respond to it and whether you bounce back from it.
As for mistakes, we all make them. The key is to learn from them and avoid repeating them.
4) Do you have a warped sense of what your life "should" be like?
Dreams are good, and I highly recommend you be in touch with your big dreams for your life. But perhaps it's time to reassess whether your dreams are attainable. Perhaps you need to revisit them and determine whether some adjustment is in order? Are the dreams you had as a teenager serving you as an adult, for example?
Or are your dreams warping your ability to enjoy the life you have at the moment?
It is easy to get so caught up in what you wish your life were like that you forget to be grateful for all you have now. Of course, it is healthy to dream. But dreams without goals are wishes, and goals without action are hopes. So, get honest with yourself about what you want for yourself and how--or if--you can still make it happen.
5) Fighting against the natural flow of life.
Life has a natural flow to it. While it offers surprises on occasion, you'll also discover that life has some natural and predictable flow to it.
You will make life more complicated than it needs to be if you fight against the natural flow. For example, aging is part of the natural flow of life. But few of us like all of the things that go with an aging body. That is part of the reason plastic surgeons and health spas do such great business. People are trying to fight off aging as long as they can.
We might be happier in the long run, however, if we just went with the flow. Not that you shouldn't take good care of yourself so that your aging process is as free of illness as possible. But maybe don't fret so much over every gray hair or every new wrinkle. You'll be a lot happier in the long run.
There are other reasons that you may be holding yourself back from living your truth, of course. These are just a few possible stumbling blocks. However, if you want to live your truth, you must be honest with yourself about what is holding you back from living your truth. Be honest and then rid yourself of it so you can live your life as authentically as possible.
Until next time.
If you are ready to embrace living your truth fully and part of that means making a career change, I would like to invite you to my next live, online Masterclass. The link to register is here: https://event.webinarjam.com/register/40/xo9xnhmr.
In this Masterclass, I will offer my best tips and strategies for changing your career, whether you have been teaching for five years or 25 years.
I know that many teachers are struggling with the question of "Do I want to go back this fall?" and why wouldn't they? But, unfortunately, there is no reason to believe that this year will be less stressful than last year. And honestly, it might even get worse.
If you are toying with the idea of making a career change, you can do something about it right now. Sign up for this Masterclass at https://event.webinarjam.com/register/40/xo9xnhmr
It is August 19, 2021, at 7:00 PM EST (4:00 PM PST).