Growing up I learned early on to work hard, always hustle, expect struggles…and always, ALWAYS be a “good” girl.
True generational teachings that had been passed down from every generation that came before my parents, and from my parents to me.
Not such bad advice honestly- it definitely helped me get to where I am today.
But somewhere along the way, my young mind translated these things to mean I needed to work myself to exhaustion, be productive every minute of the day, keep my expectations for joy and happiness on the low side…and consistently put the happiness of others before my own. In short - I learned to become a workaholic and people pleaser, with little to no boundaries, and almost no concept of who I really was …and even less desire to find out who I really wanted to be.
And for years on end, I worked and hustled myself into a person I thought I should be, not the person I actually wanted to be. Every action I took and every thought I had was focused on moving me one step closer towards the image I had created in my head of the woman I thought I should be. The one that fit perfectly into the mold I thought I belonged in.
I ignored or disregarded anything that didn’t fit that persona. And mistook a rejection of my true self for success.
I wasn’t exactly unhappy, but I also wasn’t happy. Most days I wasn’t sure what I felt. I just knew it didn’t feel good… whatever it was. So I filled my schedule to the gills and left myself little time to feel much of anything.
And in the process, I unwittingly created my very own version of purgatory, constantly pushing myself until I thought I would break (which was often followed by beating myself up for having felt like I would break), and repeatedly criticizing myself for not being where I “should be” in life.
I created a story of how I needed to look, behave, act and show up. And lost who I truly was in the process.
Unsurprisingly, the day eventually came when I finally hit a wall and crashed and burned out.
And THANK GOD for that.
Because if I hadn’t, I probably would have stayed being someone who wasn’t a true reflection of me and I would never have found the courage to find the real me and share more of her with you in the way I have been.
And I also wouldn’t have learned one of life’s greatest lessons: A BREAKING DOWN OF WHO YOU ARE IS OFTEN A BREAKING THROUGH OF THE PERSON YOU’RE MEANT TO BE.
Feel free to read that again.
See sometimes the only way to become the person you truly want to be is by relinquishing the person you currently are. This doesn’t mean rejecting the person you are or forgetting that person entirely, it simply means shifting away from what doesn’t feel true for you and moving forward towards what does feel true.
It won’t be easy…or comfortable. And it may not even feel all that fun- at first anyway.
But if you’re willing to commit to it and bet on yourself in the process, it will always feel right.
So here’s to your future self. And your current self, who holds the courage, desire and insight to break that future self free.