Wednesday

How Do I Find Myself? What Will You Have to Risk, Change to Be Happy with You?

When you have allowed circumstances, events, and relationships to dominate who you are, it is very easy to forget where you have come from, what interests you, and why you do the things you do. Why do we, as women, allow ourselves to lose ourselves in life? Why don't we protect and enhance our identity as we go through trials and celebrations in our journey? Instead, we hide behind secret obsessions with our clothes, shoes, hair, nails, food, household, education, career, children, and most of all our mates (ie. their last names for starters). Who are you really? Some of us know about the biblical text that talks about a man and woman becoming one once they are married, but does the text say to forget who you are in the process? So this article was created to do two things: ask the question who are you really and if you don't know anymore how do you get there?

You may have been a child lost and confused, or found and focused. Whichever describes the child you were, how has your childhood affected who you are as a woman today? I remember a time when life wasn't so complicated, when the biggest part of my day was playing with dolls. I would change their clothes, comb and brush their hair, sit them down for a make-believe meal, stand them up to perform, or lay them down for rest. Then one day, my mother came into my room and told me that I was too old to be playing with dolls (I was 13 at the time) and that is when I realized my world had changed. Every time I got the impulse to want to play with my dolls I would try to fill the void with something else like reading a book or writing in my diary.

In time, I began to see that my writing would change too. I went from starting diary entries like "Dear Diary, I watched t.v. today..." to "Dear Diary, I like this boy..." Somewhere along the line I began to lose sight of the simple things in life and started to look toward the more complex things like wanting a boy to like me. I know now as an adult what was lacking in my life to cause me to become almost obsessed with boys as a teen which inspired me to write an article about father and daughter relationships, Daddy's Love, Your Man's Love: What it Is, What it Isn't by Nicholl McGuire you may find some similarities in your own life.

As we grow our needs change as well as interests, but somewhere underneath it all we are still the little girl who would prefer to be at home comfortably doing what she loves the most. Yet, society walks in and tells us "you don't need to be doing...you shouldn't...you ought to..." and then we go along even if we aren't ready to give our "it" up, the rules may not apply, or societal demands just don't define who we are. How many of us have attended a college we didn't want to, marry a person we weren't completely sure of, spent money because someone encouraged us to, had children even though we didn't want them, and the list goes on. Then we wonder why we aren't happy? Some of us just couldn't say, "No!" because of fear, worry, or confusion. Others too often said yes and many of us just didn't bother to say anything at all and just went along to get along with someone else's plan while convincing ourselves that we made the decision. Oh, how we can be such liars to ourselves!

So what is happening in your life these days that causes you to question "How Do I Find Myself?" Have you met someone who inspires you? Watched programs on television that motivated you? Had a dream or vision? Accidentally clicked on this article? Read a book that charges you? Something has moved you to ask this very simple, yet complex question and whatever it (or who) it is you may want to keep it (or who) around at least for a season until you have some perspective on where the answer to this question may lead you.

When you look in the mirror what do you see and how do you feel about what you see? Examine yourself closely and find out what you like and dislike about yourself. What will you have to do to make some changes on your outer and inner appearance to be content with what you see? If you are content, then you should have no problem relating to people who may look better than you and are more successful, but if you find yourself becoming insecure even jealous in their presence then you are not happy with who you are and what you have achieved in life, and you may be unfortunately deceiving yourself. You will need to find something or do something that will make you feel at peace with what you see in the mirror. Some people will read books, join support groups, seek therapy, change their diet, visit their doctor and dentist, or change their hair, make-up and wardrobe.

People find themselves in various ways. Some may look in the mirror and tell themselves things like, "I love you. I apologize for letting life get in the way of you. It's time to do something about you." You may have to do this exercise too and study how the world presently sees you. It's like dressing up a doll, how do you want that doll to look? What function do you want her to play in the world? Which brings us to the second point; part of finding yourself is also eliminating the negative people, places, and things in your life. A simple rule to follow is while you study how to find yourself you need not connect with anyone on a daily basis that doesn't contribute to your well-being. You aren't strong enough to handle all the issues that come with trying to help a person in trouble when you are in a crisis yourself. The kind of people and places you want in your circle will have to add to your self-worth not take from it. A person who questions "how do I find myself" doesn't need people around them who do nothing more than take from them. How can anyone find themselves without a healthy balance of giving and receiving in their relationships with others?

In my life experience, I have found that people who only take from you, drain you physically, emotionally, and spiritually. When you find yourself objecting to their demands, they accuse you of being lazy, uncaring, and selfish. They are not only thieves, but liars too. They don't bother to acknowledge what you have already done and offer their support when you are in need; their concerns are only what can you do for them now and when you don't they spread gossip. I have personally put those people at a distance or eliminated them out of my life altogether, I just don't have room for them anymore. Children are enough responsibility, who needs adults in their life who act like children?

Some people have been inspired to find themselves in the most interesting ways. They may have opened a bottle of perfume that reminded them of some happy moment in their lives, ate something unique, visited an exotic place, or struck up a conversation with a stranger. Others may have found themselves doing something more common such as: taking up a new hobby, moving to a new location, breaking up with someone, obtaining new employment, or dare I say it, getting married. Although one would argue that getting married is one of the worse situations to find who you are, it may also be the best. If you connect with the right person at the right time in your life, you may discover who you really are underneath the white wedding dress. I discovered many things about myself in my past marriage; one of the most important things was I never needed him to complete me. I had been able to immediately pick up where I had left off in my life before I met him. I didn't miss him even a little bit once we divorced. If anything, I learned that all I really wanted while being married was just a companion to talk with every now and then and go out with from time to time, but I was very content with functioning in my life by myself. "Feel free to go without me..." I would say when he would invite me to this event and that. Life was often great when there was no one at home.

You may want to try to find yourself by being by yourself. Spending many hours in meditation questioning your likes and dislikes, what you will stand for and what you won't, where you see yourself in the future and what type of man or woman would you welcome into your life should you ever want to start all over again? The T.V., radio, Internet, phone, movies, books and guests in your home can serve as a constant distraction. You will have to cut it all off if you are having a hard time trying to get some time alone to just think.

Sometimes people find themselves through resolving past issues. The thing that makes you cringe from your past and doesn't seem to go away may be the key to finding yourself. It may also be the cause for why you are questioning who you are today as well. Professional counseling even medication can help you get through some of those difficult moments.

Children are significant in helping people find character traits within themselves such as patience, perseverance, honesty, etc. but they are no help in finding who you are outside of motherhood. Some will disagree and say, "If it wasn't for the children...," but my question to them right back is "If it wasn't for the children (if they should die, grow up and move far away) who are you? If you never had any children, who are you? What makes you feel the way you do? Who are you when there is no one to care for, but you? Most of all, when you are all alone, do you like yourself? What are you doing when no is watching? Thinking about the kids or probably doing something for the kids which wouldn't be about you, but about them.

Finding yourself doesn't have to be complex. Interview yourself each day for a few minutes. "What will I have to do to make myself feel complete? What do I hope to accomplish before I die? What will I have to resolve in my past so that I may enter a new relationship with less baggage? How do I go about making a difference in the world around me?" These are only a few of the many questions others like you ask themselves and there are those who are doing something about it. Get out, enjoy the world! Pray and meditate on wisdom that will usher you into your destiny. Make mistakes and learn from them. These are keys to helping you find yourself. Be blessed!

Nicholl

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About Me

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Over 20 years office work experience, six years completed college coursework, background in print media and communications, recognized for exceptional attendance and received merit increase for past job performance, self-published author and part-time entrepreneur, Internet marketing and social media experience. Interned for non-profit organization, women's group and community service business. Additional experience: teaching/training others, customer service and sales. Learn more at Nicholl McGuire and Nicholl McGuire Media

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