This article originally appeared on the 1000 Ripple Effects blog, you can see it here

When was the last time you asked yourself “Who am I?” Really truly explored ‘you’. Your history, future dreams and how you show up in life today?

Everybody has a story, a journey they have travelled, learnings they have made, history. Very few people have led a ‘privileged life’, we all have stories of sadness, of absolute joy. Too many people have seen the extremes of violence and felt desperation. Seen the effects of illness on loved ones, and themselves. Suffered loss they never felt they could move on from. This is your story, your beliefs, possibly even your anchors, holding you in place, unable to move. 

These experiences are what have shaped you to be the person you are today. They don’t have to define your future. 

When was the last time you dreamed of a better future for yourself? Do you wish for happiness, fulfilment, clarity, freedom, or balance? You are not alone – most people do. You can change your story – and you can start today!

The journey of self-discovery takes a lifetime. It takes a lifetime because you always change and grow. This is good, this is what you want to happen. What is holding you back from starting? Do any of these sound familiar:

Fear of what you will learn about yourself. Fear of being vulnerable to others. Fear of accepting things you have done in the past. Fear of reliving your past. Fear of change. Fear of becoming the person you always dreamt about. 

Think about what scares you? Why does it scare you? How can you face the demon? What will motivate you to work through the bad stuff? What does fear look like to you?

Lack of self-love
Guess who our biggest critics are – yep our self. How many times have you told yourself you will do x only when you have achieved z? How many times have you thought ‘I don’t deserve this’? 

Poor body image, lack of self-worth, lack of confidence, all come from lack of self-love. When was the last time you loved yourself? Wore jewellery or clothes which made you feel great. Exercised or had a massage to make your body feel great. Laughed, orgasmed – releasing the natural feel-good drug of oxytone.

When was the last time you celebrated being you?

Stifle dreams
Dream takers are everywhere. It starts in school and with our parents, then their ‘can’t’ and ‘don’t’ language becomes our inner voice. And we most likely say those words to others – our friends, team members and our children.

Remove negative words from your language. Replace negative speak with positive affirmations. Remove people from your life you do not believe in you. Stand tall and back yourself. Be your own personal cheer squad.

When was the last time you dreamed of your future – and then plotted how you were going to make your dream a reality? 

Too much noise
When was the last time you stopped and listened to the noise in your world? The cars, sirens, children, dogs, birds, trucks, workers, builders, the radio, TV, your phone. How do you feel? Can you concentrate on what you are trying to do? Does it raise your stress levels?

Stepping away from the noise and busyness of life, enjoying the silence, being in your mind, is important. In fact, meditation and mindfulness are key to self-discovery. Slowing your mind, allowing sub-conscious thoughts to filter through. Reduces stress, allows for problem solving and connects you with your mind and body.

Where do you start on your journey of self-discovery? How do you find out who you are? 

  • Face your demons – release your fears – revisit your past
  • Recognise your strengths – understand who you are
  • Define your life purpose – identify your passions – do things that make you happy
  • Clarify your values – understand your beliefs
  • Set goals – create daily intentions – be focused
  • Find inspiration – surround yourself with people and things that lift you up
  • Seek challenges – stretch yourself – create new thinking
  • Spend time alone – practice self-care

Stop being your own worst enemy! Stop lying to yourself about your emotions and feelings and start accepting them and allowing yourself to feel whatever is it you feel. If you have no clear idea of who you are, you will have no clarity in what you want or seek.

Self-discovery is a journey of a life time. There is no easy fix, no magic pill or fairy dust. It is constant – as you evolve and grow, you will receive new insights about who you are. The more you understand about yourself the more empowered you are going to be.

A clear self-understanding will bring renewed confidence, awareness, and strength. You have a purpose. You find happiness, fulfilment, clarity, freedom, and balance in all areas of your life.
What difference can you make to the world, yourself, your family and community? How are you going to show up?