There is much talk these days about being authentic and finding “the real you”, as if it’s something that you just misplaced amongst a pile of papers, or dropped down the back of the sofa and will suddenly one day find it again and everything will be sunshine and light.
The theory that we can only be happy when we’re being true to ourselves I believe is true. But finding this is a constant, and complex, evolution, not a sudden overnight occurrence with instant results.
That said, there are many ways you can strive to cut out all of the noise and distraction around that core you inside though, by asking a few simple powerful questions.
Again this will not mean sudden enlightenment (though it may well set off enough lightbulbs to make your next few steps much clearer and more purposeful) but by asking these questions regularly and listening to the answers, and you can’t help but allow your true you to flourish more.
For each question, complete the sentence in as many ways as you can think of. Don’t censor yourself, don’t limit yourself in what or how much you write, don’t overanalyse, just write what comes to you, let it spill out.
The 5 key questions:
1. I’ve always been someone who’s enjoyed…
2. I’ve always been told my best qualities are…
3. I’ve always been someone who’s wanted to…
4. I’ve always been some who’s not afraid to…
5. I’ve always been someone who’s been fascinated by…
Once you have answered these five questions in as many ways as you can, put the answers to one side for a while. You’ll naturally turn over some of the answers in your mind and they will lead to new ideas and revelations.
The act of just doing this exercise once will lead to insights you may not have had before, or that you may not have had in long time.
Do you ever come across someone who’s talking about painting or reading or writing or interiors and you suddenly think to yourself: “I used to LOVE doing that myself! I haven’t done it in YEARS…”
These are the kind of revelations that will help, allowing you to rediscover some of the passions you’ve long forgotten about, the passions that got buried in an avalanche of everyday demands and obligations. The passions that make you feel most you.
You may find that a few days later, you want to try this exercise again and see what else comes.
You may well also find that certain ideas and past loves you remembered are now urging you to explore them again, like a small child tugging desperately at your sleeve to go play with them while you engage in “adult” conversation with people who you find dull and uninspiring. Metaphorically speaking.
It’s ok to go and play! You never know what kind of creative adventures it will lead to and how you will, in time, again become the wonderful creative person you’ve always been.
Please feel free to share some of your answers and revelations with us in the comments below.
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