Know Thyself

Photo by Emmanuel Ikwuegbu on

“Discover yourself, otherwise you have to depend on other people’s opinions who don’t know themselves,” Osho.  I felt this was the perfect follow up to yesterday’s piece about doing what others tell you to do.  The best way to avoid getting caught up in someone else’s definition of who you are is to take the time to define yourself.  Human nature is judge-y.  Just by definition, we are trained to make snap decisions so we know if something is dangerous or not, so we are constantly evaluating and labelling and categorizing people.  We know that doesn’t always work and it isn’t always true.  But we have the ability to simultaneously define ourselves and keep out of the box. 

The idea isn’t to define who we are and never to move from that spot, rather, it is to define a set of boundaries.  Those boundaries can expand and shift, but they don’t often break.  The point is, it is up to US to define those boundaries—not other people.  We have so much information coming at us every day that it’s easy to get lost in what we should be doing or who we are supposed to be.  But all of that noise is only that—noise.  We get to say what works for us and what doesn’t.  We aren’t meant to fit in everywhere and with everyone—we are meant to create our own space.

The empowerment that comes from creating who you are is unlike anything else in the world.  It is the divine connection.  And we aren’t meant to be one thing.  Creation in itself is destructive.  We break down and rebuild and redefine and integrate new things all the time.  We lose pieces of ourselves in favor of something stronger.  We combine what we knew with what we learn and we are the alchemy of our lives.  It is a constant evolution. Why on Earth would we give that power to anyone else?  And why would we all try to do the same thing?  We aren’t meant to.

The ironic part is that we grow up hearing that different is good and that we don’t want to be the same yet we try to shove everyone down the same path and make them yield the same results all while praising uniqueness and criticizing when someone does it differently.  We are so backwards.  It is scary to truly let go of other people’s opinions and expectations because you’re floating in open water.  Whether you sink or swim is entirely up to you.  But at that point, it doesn’t matter because no matter HOW you learn to swim, the point is you need to move.  It is the same with life.  The point isn’t to live the same day on repeat or to live by someone else’s definition until you die.  Life is vibrant and beautiful and can be anything we want it to be.  Don’t hold back because losing someone’s praise in favor of gaining your own self-respect is infinitely more gratifying.  So is seeing the results of your efforts toward your goals over what you were told to do.  So while it is scary, it is always worth it.  Jump in! 

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