“Your time is limited, don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma, which is living the result of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other opinions drown your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition, they somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” ~ Steve Jobs
On December 3rd, we introduced Pillar #12 of “The Year of the Best You” – Be You. Today, we will recap how the month went in terms of embracing who we are, our authentic self. Our December worksheet allowed us to focus on ways to spend time getting to know our self and tapping into our intuition. I think this was my favourite worksheet so far. When I look at my responses, I realize I am so glad that I am who I am and have so many interests, things and people in my life to be grateful for. I hope you enjoyed the process too. If you found it was too busy a time of year to complete it, I think it would be a great way to start off the New Year.
This whole concept of authenticity and our relationship with self is the most fundamental aspect of being the best you. It was a perfect way to end “The Year of the Best You”. In order to live authentically, we have to take a step away from the rat race and get real about who we are and what we stand for. In some cases, we can become so clouded by other people’s expectations that we have lost sight of the beautiful person within us that is waiting to be seen.
My mantra for 2018
In my post last week, I said that I was going to leave a mantra for myself for the coming year. I had an idea of what it would be without even thinking how perfectly it aligned with this week’s pillar. My guiding mantra message for 2018 is as follows:
“To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best day and night to make you like everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight and never stop fighting.” ~ E.E. Cummings
Have you thought of a mantra to represent how you want 2018 to be for you?
Authenticity isn’t always easy
Authenticity and ‘being you’ will ultimately lead you to a better life, but it isn’t always easy. It takes inner work to figure out what is important to you and what values guide you, it may take overcoming real or perceived challenges, and it may involve failures and setbacks along the way. Having said all this, the payoff is so worth it.
Unfortunately, trying to live this way tends to bring out the ‘critics’, which Brené Brown makes reference to in her must watch video Why Your Critics Aren’t The Ones Who Count. Brené attributes her life-changing shift in mindset to this quote by Teddy Roosevelt:
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.”
Like it or not, critics will always exist, but which ones count in your life? Brené labels the 4 critics occupying seats in the arena as follows – 1. shame, 2. scarcity, 3. comparison, and 4. the actual critics in your life (family, colleagues, etc). Sometimes, our biggest critics are the ones within us.
In the end, the voices that count are the ones that are always there for you and support you. When my husband Colin speaks, I listen, because he is always there to dust me off and encourage me to get back in the arena and fight to be who I want to be.
In the words of Marie Forleo, “the world needs that special gift that only you have”.
Wishing you a safe and hopeful New Year!