When Do You Feel The Most Like Yourself?

ca522f9ecf118773ecf873d5067a33f6.jpgThis is such a powerful drawing, the way it expresses so many different messages. When I look at it, it gives me a sense of disguise, pretending to be someone else, changing our appearances, thinking in different ways, seeing things from different minds (and perspectives), the different sides of our personality, feeling disconnected from our mind and our body or being slightly (or a lot) different when we’re with certain people. I’ve previously written about being yourself here and here because one of the most important advice that’s always stuck with me is to be yourself.

At the same time, I definitely feel I am someone that hides parts of my personality with certain people, even when I’m being myself. I’m sure most people will be able to relate to this, as we don’t tend to reveal all of ourselves to just anybody. The people I feel most myself with would definitely be my family, Mr Penguin and very close friends. For example, when I was living at home, I’d sing and dance around the house without a care in the world. I was as silly as I am, or as talkative, quiet and strange as can be. When I live with other people I don’t know well, that part of me is not shown.

The moments I feel completely myself is when I sit alone, write in my diary, go for a long walk, talk with a loved one or read a book. It’s when I stare out the window doing nothing, drink quietly at a cafe, cook a meal, stare at flowers, be my silly self, sitting in the library, spy on a little sparrow, laugh with friends or have a meaningful conversation with someone. Feeling myself is when I simply talk the way I do, walk the way I walk, laugh however quiet or loud, see the world around me and remember all the things I’m grateful for. It’s moments when I speak my mind, stand up for myself and stay true to my values.

Perhaps you might feel the most yourself when you do something you love. It might be playing an instrument, playing a sport, being creative through drawing, dancing or sewing, teaching or watching a movie. It might be when you’re wearing something that you feel reflects who you are, or when you listen to a song. When I feel the most myself is when I feel comfortable, peaceful and confident. It’s when I am completely at ease and happy with who I am. It’s that feeling of not giving a fudge brownie about what anyone thinks.

We might feel most ourselves when listening to the sound of the waves going in and out, breathing in the morning fresh crisp air and walking in the rain with the sound of tapping against the umbrella. It’s natural to some extent to feel more yourself with certain people, but it’s unnatural to pretend, act another character or conform in order to fit in. There are certain people that bring out our silly, talkative, weird, strange, caring, random, quiet, loud, wise, funny and creative sides. So tell me, when do you feel the most yourself?

Art by Helena Perez Garcia

The Art Of Being Yourself

xKikis-Delivery-Service-1989-00-00-56.jpg.pagespeed.ic.XPeLW3CLHU.jpgThere is a common saying that goes don’t trade your authenticity for approval. It speaks such truth and is a wise reminder to remember that we are born into this world to be as we are. We live in a world that often wants to conform and fit in, which leaves space for no originality and causes people to feel the need to behave a certain way. As someone who was left out a lot growing up, I can really relate to the concept of being and embodying yourself with no shame. The truth is there were a lot of people who talked a certain way because other people spoke that way. There are people who wear certain clothing because they want to fit in with a crowd and then there are people who aspire to be someone else. For myself, I would rather be with a few friends that accept me solely for who I am, rather than acting as another person.

I have mentioned this in a few posts, but one of the best advice I received growing up was from my father, who always said to be yourself. If I were ever to face a problem or feel doubtful in myself, he would remind me to stay true to myself. Don’t worry so much about what others think. When I reflect on many moments of being left out, most of the time it was through choice (call it the introvert inside of me) of preferring to spend time in my own mind. Other times it was simply because I didn’t feel the desire to be energetic or talk about certain things. As someone who is more of a wallflower, I like to observe or have a fruitful (for want of a better word) conversation with someone about insightful, witty, meaningful or reflective things. I always feel energy by things that make me think about life in another way.
largeGrowing up, I personally did not enjoy high school, which Savannah Brown explains so wonderfully well. On one hand I felt that they looked past the arts and the creative side, but put a lot of focus on sports and grades. On the other hand, there was a sense that the arts is often looked down on, compared to being a doctor, computer engineer or accountant. There were many things that occured, which caused me to feel there was something wrong with me, when questions such as: “Why are you so quiet?”, “Are you feeling okay?” or “Why aren’t you talking?”. As an introvert, I just didn’t feel the need to speak or engage in drama or certain situations. There was this inclination to assume that when one is quiet, that there is something wrong. It immediately makes one feel like an outsider. I spent a lot of years in high school feeling like there was something wrong with me…and that was absolutely not true.

by Marcel DzamaIt makes me embrace even more so who I am today. Being an INFJ, HSP and a creative soul, I appreciate the parts of myself that doesn’t like to have to fit in. I wear what I feel like, say what I feel the need to and speak the way I do. I am quite a deep thinker, and I don’t like making much effort to make friends. If I feel the click with someone, then I like things to naturally happen, if it’s meant to be. I’m quite silly and that’s a layer that people don’t usually expect when they just meet me. As an introvert, I tend to peel back the layers more and more when I get to know someone on a personal level. Most people never see who I am fully, but that doesn’t go to say that I am not being fully myself. It just means I’m not ready to show all the sides of myself.

In one of the wise words in a Ted talk by Caroline McHugh: “I mean people that have been successful at achieving whatever they set out to do. You’ll find that the thing they have in common is they have nothing in common.” she goes on to say “These are individuals who have managed to figure out the unique gift that the universe gave them when they incarnated, and then put that at the service of their goals. ” This is a wonderful talk that I highly suggest watching. We were all told, be yourself at some point. Whether it was before a job interview, meeting a new person or a presentation we are preparing. Whatever it may be, we were told this because the best person we can be is the person we were born as. Every person has the potential to do great things, without the concern of what others beside them are doing.

78eef0363f87d72978535e614b66257c.jpgThe way you appear is quite possibly the smallest and insignificant part of yourself. Not to say this in a sense to neglect it – because dear reader, you are beautiful. However, it’s to emphasise how much your mind is the most beautiful of all. Everyone has their own quirks. Do you ever notice how when you make a new friend, and the more you get to know them, the more you may start to see their funny side or the side that is compassionate and caring? Being yourself means that you know you are not perfect, and you don’t mind that. Being yourself doesn’t have to mean an outgoing, confident and self assured person that the media often sculpts. It means embracing your quiet, embracing your beauty and embracing the parts of yourself that make you you.

It’s not about fitting into what is seen as right and it isn’t about conforming to societies expectations. At the time, I expected myself to go to University because it is just what one does if they want to be successful – at the time this was what I thought. The truth is University isn’t the only way to success, it simply encourages it. Being yourself is knowing that you are you in all of your strange habits, personal style choices and the way you think about certain things. You have nothing to prove to other people. It is far better to be yourself and meet people who draw towards you, then draw the wrong people who will meet someone who is just fleeting by as a copy.

Being yourself is the ultimate way to embrace the world of judgment and order, with a touch of your own special magic.

art: naked women via | masks by Marcel Dzama


How to See Your Own Beauty

7f9299a6d818989ece272256e4350fe1You got your own style, now let it come through. And remember no matter what, you got to be you. -The Little Mermaid. I believe in being yourself. Unapologetically.  With the media, there comes a misconception on what is beautiful. Titles telling us “How to be beautiful”, rather than “You are beautiful”. Positive body image, self esteem and overall acceptance of yourself is extremely important for women (and men). I’m sure most people can relate, when you stare into the mirror, it’s easy to microscopically point out every flaw you see inside your head. Ah my skin has blemishes, my lashes are sparse and my lips are dry. In a way, we put ourselves down to an extent that we’re used to it. Walking around the stores, we buy the cleanser to clear our skin (don’t get me wrong – everyone should be using a cleanser!), we buy mascara to embrace longer lashes and chapstick to fix dry lips. Although, some of these are a necessity, the way we go about it, is using negative self talk.

In terms of body image, I’ve always struggled with this, and I’m not afraid to confess it, because I believe there are many people who are silently conscious of some part of their bodies too. Does anyone else also have a visualisation of their end result they hope to achieve? Through struggling with my body wellness, there are 3 main actions to take for your wellness. The first one is to exercise (whether that’s a walk or trip to the gym), because this one really affects your mind. The time we spend being negative about our body, is well spent if we run it all out at the gym.  It’ll make you feel much more confident about yourself, more energy and a better mood. The second one is to eat healthy and drink lots. It’s good to get all the fruit and vege goodness, and we can’t forget water. The third one is to stay positive. Give yourself a compliment everyday. Your hair looks great. You have beautiful eyes.

Advice on how to see your beauty:

Accept compliments. Next time someone compliments you, give them a reassuring and grateful – Thank you.

The 3 Wellness tips. Exercise, Eat Well, Think Positive. When you feel good, you look good.

List your inner and outer attributes. What do you love about yourself? Your kindness. Your eyes. Your warm heart. Your humour.

Eliminate self-judgment. Cancel out the lies, and replace them with truths of yourself.

Being Kind. As much as accepting our outward beauty is important, it’s really our heart that exposes our true beauty.

Surround yourself with positive people. Negative people will drag you down. Positive people will lift you up and bring the best out of you.

Smile. Being happy is beautiful. It radiates and gives you joy inside and out.

1 Peter 3:3-4 Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.

Self Expression: Conversations on Fashion and Style

tumblr_ng3z7zRKUn1qhup4ao1_1280Do you ever feel when you dress up, wear make-up and have groomed yourself specially, (with the additional time spent in the bathroom to clean your face and what not) that sometimes more or less, sometimes, people will treat you differently? I am not sure how to explain this, and hope someone can relate to this. You may or may not have someone occasionally talk to you and you see their eyes dart from head to toe, trying to subtly see what you are wearing. The conclusion I have come to is that as humans we are very visual beings. Our first perception of someone often comes from the way they look, before we get to know them.

We are a society that feeds off mass consumerism, with the media telling us to buy more and more. One of these are that wearing the same outfit is boring and that there is never enough in our wardrobe (I’m sure you’ve had those days where you felt like “There’s nothing to wear”). The truth is I am the sort of person, who doesn’t mind wearing the same thing many many times during the year, because that’s what clothes are for right? There isn’t anything wrong with treasuring what you go, and plus it’s a good way to save money and the environment. Fashion doesn’t have to be expensive, especially for someone that loves thrift shopping.

However, fashion has many stereotypes. It is true that because fashion and beauty are seen from their visual element, people often assume it is shallow. Here are some fashion stereotypes:

1) People who wear fashion and make-up think they are better. Presentation is really important, and first impressions don’t get second chances. Although let’s be real – wearing a Louis Vuitton bag does not make you a better person. I’m a firm believer in staying true to who you are. However, if people wear clothes to feel better than someone else, it is a turn off. Or like-wise when people assume someone who dresses up is showing off. There are people who are very materialistic, and there are those who wear it simply because they feel good in what they are wearing. I appreciate people who use fashion to express themselves and show that they have made an effort. The way we look can never surpass who we are in the inside. Nothing can beat character.

2) Fashion and Make-up is vain. There is no denying that there are vain people in the Fashion industry. The thing to remember here is that there are shallow and vain people everywhere, regardless of what we wear or what industry we work in. Most people wear something to express who they are, show their personal style and what they may be feeling like that day. There is nothing wrong with wanting to present one’s self a certain way. The only thing that I wish people could understand, is that they don’t need these ‘things’ to be beautiful. They already are. The fashion and make-up is simply an accessory of who you are already.

As with all parts of the creative industry, whether that’s – art, fashion, writing, make-up, music, film, design and so forth – it is a form of self expression, emotion, imagination, change, ideas, style, perceiving words into visuals, culture and history. The best advice I’ve ever gotten is to be yourself. There is no one quite like you. Wear what you want and don’t worry about what others think. Fashion is a form of instant self expression. Whether you are walking on the street or meeting someone for the first time, your clothes are the quickest way to give someone the vibe you’re sending out, and of course after comes your charismatic self. Fashion is the item you wear, but Style always stays with you.

‘Every child is an artist. The problem is staying an artist when you grow up.’

-Pablo Picasso

I love this quote. It is a reminder to keep your sense of self. As adults, there can be a sense of conformity, confinement and that this is what’s right and that’s wrong. Embrace your own self. Adults can be very hard on themselves, but children make mistakes again and again, but they keep trying. Their imagination’s are wild and they believe that it’s all real (including the tooth fairy). As children our minds are limitless, without restrictions. Let’s keep that and express our own creativity without any limitations.

*This article was inspired from allysoninwonderland.com from the article liking fashion means I’m vain and other stereotypes.

Image from thenletitbe.tumblr.com