Choosing an outfit for Halloween is a measured science. Trying to find something that has the perfect ratio of sweet, scary, creative and funny can leave you feeling like staying in and handing out candy to the 5-year-olds who have effortlessly nailed it. In a way, the struggle to pick the perfect Halloween costume is similar to the difficulty we face in presenting our everyday selves.
With all the faces that we have to wear—professionally, personally, romantically, and otherwise—who we actually are can often get lost in the mix. Remembering to be your authentic self, even while in that business meeting or while wearing that costume, is an important aspect in maintaining self-love.
Avoid inner turmoil by tuning into yourself with a series of small tasks throughout the day. These reminders will serve as replenishing portraits of who your best self really is.
Literally telling yourself who and what you are, even if using traits that you only aspire to at the moment, aids in affirming not just who you are now, but you want to be in the future. Look at yourself in the mirror. Maybe you wish you had more spontaneity in your life. When you look in the mirror, see yourself as adventurous. See the impulse you have denied or concealed, and feel it rise out of you. “I am spontaneous.”
This also works for those who are unhappy with their current career path. Visualizing yourself getting a promotion or an interview is the first step in actualizing that goal. By telling yourself already have the position you want, the only task left is to go out and get it. You are inciting the drive you’ll need to make it happen and embracing your true, authentic self.
What Makes Me Happy?
For Julie Andrews, it’s raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, but what are a few of your favorite things. Think about things big and small. Quirky conversations with strangers you’ll never see again. Playing scrabble with your mom. Your job. Your kids. Your family. What gives you peace? What makes you feel alive? What never fails to pick you up when you’re feeling down? Writing these things out into a list, filling the page with positivity, is a fun way to create a word map that is the essence of you. Fold it up and place a crystal point on top of it to lock in the gratifying energy.
What do I value most?
List three things that your true authentic self values most. Is it freedom? Is it being close to family? Maybe it’s your spirituality or your art? Limit yourself to three things. Really try to focus in on what your soul needs most in order to flourish. Pin pointing these values will allow you to quench what your being is thirsty for. It helps when making big decisions in life to know what values you need to prioritize most.
If only they knew…
Feeling misunderstood is a common problem for everyone at some point in life. While being understood by others is not your concern, it is important not to fall into the trap of becoming who others perceive you to be. What do you wish people knew about you? Do you wish they knew how creative you are? How much you love art history or cult films? Why not share! Remember that while you are forced to handle many responsibilities in the various facets of your life, that doesn’t mean you have to hide your interests or what makes you who you are.
If you are a naturally thoughtful person, who thinks more than they speak, others may perceive you to be quiet. Don’t let that label define how you act, or whether or not you speak up for yourself. If you wish that others knew what you were thinking, actualize that desire by forcing yourself to verbalize your opinion more. It can be uncomfortable to expose yourself, but it is doubly rewarding in strengthening personal bonds and understanding when you do.
Where do I want to be in five years?
What is this, a job interview? There is a reason that this question has become so common in interview situations. Because it is so effective in describing who you are! Defining your ambitions tells you where you are at in life and if you’re living with your authentic self in mind. Setting goals of where you want to be in five years will help you to manifest those aspirations. Think outside of career, as well. Who do you see yourself with? What do they appreciate about you most? What friends are surrounding you? How will you continue to nourish those friendships? What do you most love about the person you see yourself as in five years? How can you be that person, today?
Through these simple tasks, we celebrate, ground, and grow our personality in ways that give us the confidence to always be our authentic self.