Friday, December 3, 2010
Is That You, Really?
Who had big dreams when you were a child?
Who let some of these dreams fall by the wayside?
Why? What happened?
What stopped you?
One big reason why we let go of our dreams is because we forgot how great we really are. We underestimate ourselves.
Note I said “forgot” because we all once knew how great we were, but only later forget.
How did we forget who we really are?
Because we learn.
It is how we humans are.
We were born perfect and when we were babies, we all knew we were perfect. Our authentic self is perfect like a shining diamond.
Has anyone seen an under-confident baby?
There are no under-confident babies. All babies have charisma.
As we grow up, we learn. We are incredible learning machines. We learned to walk, we learned languages, we learned who we are, the people around us. We learned that we have hands, a nose, ears, legs. We learned all the things that allow us to function as a human being.
Together with all the useful things in life, we also learned some nasty things that diminish our authentic self.
Together with the useful things, we learned nasty things from our parents, grand parents, uncles, aunts, people in authority like our teachers, school principals. Later, we learned from our friends, bosses, and we also teach (and mislead) ourselves.
All these people are well intentioned and most of the things they tell us are useful and helpful. However, invariably some will limit us instead of help us.
Our negative learnings form a layer around our true authentic self. It is like a layer of sticky horse poo on a diamond.
Horse poo are false statements from others that are installed into our minds as limiting beliefs, as if they were true.
I can remember a few from my childhood.
One day, our secondary school principal came to our class and told us this:
“No student from this school has ever been to university. None of you will go to university.” For years, I accepted that I was not good enough for university as “fact” and never questioned this statement.
I only realised how false this statement was years later when I met university graduates and saw how they were not much different from me. I later went on to university and also post graduate studies.
On the first day of soccer training at my secondary school, the teacher picked the eleven tallest boys to form the school soccer team. There was no try out at all. The selection was over in the ten minutes that it took to pick out the taller boys in the classroom.
The teacher then told us that the school team has been formed and those not selected can stay on – as ball pickers, if we wished.
I was deeply disappointed because I am passionate about soccer, and I was a pretty fast and good winger. Since then, I lost interest in playing soccer, believing that small build people are hopeless as soccer players.
Of course, this was not true. There are many accomplished soccer superstars that are about the same height as me (5ft 7in). Look at Lionel Messi (5ft 7in) and Maradona (5ft 5in), just to name a few.
Everyone has some horse poo covering our true selves. What are yours?
These negative messages are constantly brought up to our conscious minds through negative self talk. Stop for a few moments and listen to your own self talk. What can you hear? Did you hear yourself putting yourself down?
So what happens?
Over the layer of other’s horse poo, we add our own layer of bull poo (bullshit).
We mistakenly thought that the horse poo - what others say about us - is our authentic self. We’re misled into believing that the inadequate, insecure, frightened person is really us, when it is actually just other people’s horse poo.
So we try to hide other people’s horse poo with our own layer of bull poo. This we call our “personality” or image. We’ve got to have “personality” or image, we thought. This is just the glittering appearance we show the world. It is exaggerated and puffed up, and it is unauthentic.
Such bull poo is fear driven. With a fear driven mindset, we are constantly asking "How will others see me?" "Will they think that I am good enough?" "What will I lose?"
Sometimes I catch myself acting in an unauthentic way. What we do and say are not in alignment with how we feel. We know it when we are acting this way, it makes us feel lousy inside. Others know it too.
So what should we believe in? What should we do?
Do we want to believe that we are born with a special talent. That, at our core, we are diamonds. If we do, we will seek out our talent, nurture it, develop it, and excel in it. We are going use our talent to make a significant contribution to our community.
Or, do we believe in the layer of horse poo. That we are not good in this, not good in that. We are too much this, and too little that. That we are not worth much, or won’t amount to much?
The price we pay is that we feel we are too fat or too thin, unlovable, unworthy, undeserving, incompetent, can’t do anything right, can’t have want we want.
Or, do we believe in our own bull poo. We do things to gain other’s approval, validation and acceptance, but deep in our hearts we know that it is not us.
For some fortunate people, someone comes along and point out their true self to them.
But, we don’t need to wait for others to clear the poo for us to find our true self.
We just need to take the leap of faith and believe in our true, authentic selves. Believe that you are worthy and deserving.
Our true self lies just behind our fear and self doubt. Let your true self shine from inside out, just like a baby’s charisma. You had it when you were a baby, and it is still in you. You will find that people start to respect you more for it.
I'll be sharing with you some tools to help you rediscover your authentic self and to live your life to its fullest potential.
I leave you with the awesome insight of Marianne Williamson.
Try it, because you are made of amazingly sterling stuff, don’t you agree?