Being yourself - what does it mean?

Who I am
Louise Hay

Being yourself - what does it mean?

To be yourself is not to impose your own way of being on others. Above all, it is working on the best version of yourself, the one that makes you feel free, fulfilled and happy.

Last update: May 30, 2022

Everything around us constantly reminds us of the importance of being yourself from birth. Parents, teachers, best friends and even the world of marketing and advertising confirm this. But what does it really mean to be yourself?

We have no doubts when we have to describe ourselves on social profiles. However, we resort to generic and empty definitions to express who we should be, but we rarely describe who we really are. And we don't do it because we don't always know. Also because, in most cases, we live dominated by external conditioning.

We want to join a group; we aspire to be part of the environment that surrounds us; we need to be appreciated and accepted, and this need deprives us of authenticity and even psychological well-being.

Thus, in a society that is almost always used to indicating who thinks, feels and acts in a unique and different way, daring to be oneself in all its essence becomes a business.

Become what you are


Being authentic is a journey that lasts a lifetime and in which we must invest our efforts every day.

Being yourself means ...

In many films, series and books aimed at children and young people, readers are urged to discover themselves. Heroes and heroines who break the mold, characters who, due to their unique characteristics, are always victorious. However, when the little readers look at the world they live in, they find that they have been scammed. The reality is quite different.

The reign of selfies and filters prevails, resources that from an early age get used to showing a false ego. Teens learn that in order to integrate they must imitate others. Being yourself therefore becomes an empty mandate that is fine as a sentence on Instagram, but it is better not to put it into practice. And this is where the problems arise.

When one tries to dissolve into external conventions without connecting with one's essence, one suffers. Young people feel increasingly pressured, overwhelmed, anxious and empty. They create characters and narratives that they necessarily adapt to, like a shoe horn. In the long run, however, life becomes so tight that anxiety, eating disorders, self-harm, etc. arise.

Revealing the true self is a challenge in this digital world where online happiness and beauty through filters matter most. It is necessary to make a change, to start a revolution in which to start being yourself. Let's see how.

In a digital-dominated world, people have gotten used to building false selves that only cause unhappiness.

To be yourself is to explore and accept your nature

Being oneself implies looking within oneself. We are so used to watching, admiring and even imitating others that many have become social automatons. Maybe it's time to get a little short-sighted to lay eyes on what is close to us: ourselves.

Let's find out what defines us, what situations, experiences and sensations make us feel good. We turn a deaf ear to what is expected of us and listen to our inner voice. He certainly has a lot to tell us. We accept all our nuances and singularities, because in the essence lies the truth, our authentic being.

Being yourself means taking risks

When you finally dare to be yourself, you leave behind fears, shame and insecurity. It hurts a whole life to silence who we are than to reveal at a given moment what we feel and what we need. For this you need courage and large doses of self-love, but it will be worth it and the happiness.

The research study by Dr. Guler Boyraz and colleagues at Louisiana Tech University highlights an interesting point. The most authentic people show lower stress levels and higher psychological well-being. Therefore, if we want to have a fuller life, we dare to be ourselves in every moment and situation.

Authenticity requires the deactivation of negative inner narratives

We are all the product of our education, our experiences and the culture that surrounds us. This means that we have integrated clearly counterproductive patterns of thought and perceptions.

Examples are all the narratives related to the physical appearance with which we are educated (too fat, thin, short, tall, etc), as well as the comments on our value and ability (you are not worth anything, do not even think about dedicating yourself to that field, etc).

We detect these negative perceptions in our inner dialogue and transform them. Let's replace them with our strengths, get in touch with potentials, virtues, dreams and needs and focus our attention on them.

To be yourself you have to accept strengths and weaknesses. We are one and the other. 

Being yourself means always working on the best version of yourself

Our identity and our inner self are a multifaceted dimension. They are made up of many faces: some brighter and others grayer. We are not perfect and that imperfection integrates and also defines who we are.

Being yourself, however, means working on the best version of yourself every day, always giving the best of yourself. This also implies never impose who we are, what we want and what we like on others.

Respect is essential. Authenticity lies in accepting that everyone has their own vision of the world and that it is possible to live in harmony.

If we strive to be better every day, to take care of ourselves, to appreciate ourselves and those around us, coexistence will be more fulfilling.

“People often say they haven't found each other yet. But the self is not something that is found, but something that is created.

-Thomas Szasz-

Being vulnerable also means celebrating your person

There is another decisive element that we should practice much more. To be yourself you also need to be vulnerable. It is undoubtedly complicated, as there are aspects of us that we do not like or that we are afraid to reveal to others. We fear criticism or, even worse, of not being understood.

However, to celebrate who we are in full authenticity, it is good to reveal yesterday's fears, wounds, broken dreams and even chronic illnesses. If we all did this, perhaps we would discover how incredibly similar we are; many masks, filters and falsehoods would fall and we would embrace each other in a more authentic, simple and meaningful way.

It is worth a try. Being yourself is a difficult task in a slightly frivolous world, however, any effort will be worth it.

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