“People think you’re so sweet, but I know the truth.”
When my ex said these words, I knew they weren’t true. But momentarily there was something resembling comfort in the idea that instead of being outright rejected by him, I just needed to “do better.” I preferred self-rejection. Unfortunately, a pattern formed from the lie that somehow comforted and hurt me.
Unhealthy thought processes and people-pleasing ways? Welcome to my world.
What did that look like? Striving for acceptance, suppressing my own needs, and swallowing my ideas for the sake of someone else’s.
For years, this was my life. Friendships. Relationships. Acquaintance-ships. I became less and less familiar with the core of who I was, which made it impossible to love myself. How can you love a stranger. Often, when my relationships were tested or ended is when I learned who I’d become in that scenario.
As I matured – often as a result of mistakes and loss – I had to come to terms with 2 things:
- How would I uncover my true self and begin to own my story?
- Could I narrate my story in a way that may help others?
When “life” happens, it’s tempting to allow a temporary shift in perspective to become permanent. We lean toward embracing lies that brought comfort, distraction, or maybe even protection at a vulnerable moment. It takes effort and intention to train ourselves to recognize lies and embrace new possibilities. Those, plus courage, are what we’d need to decide to open the book on our lives and share with others.
To that end, here is acronym with tips to help uncover the true you, and put a positive spin on your story to encourage someone. I hope you find these tips helpful in evolving your story to a tale of triumph!
S – Steer your speech away from shame (and blame).
Your story is skewed by speaking from a place of shame, or consistently assigning blame. Make your transformation the focus of your story. The supporting cast is just that. You’re the star. Good or bad, you’re the only ‘character’ you can control!
T – Take back your thoughts.
Envy, fear, and pride shift your thoughts into every shape except the truth! We often behave irrationally when we’re overly concerned with what people will say about us or our choices. It’s important to avoid comparison and keep a tight rein on our thoughts to drive them in the direction of truth.
O – Overcome by getting over YOU.
Your story is shaped by your self-perception. Get real about where you are, versus where you thought you should be…and honestly evaluate the good parts of your current situation. You may be surprised!
R – Recognizing your responsibility is a relationship philosophy.
Do you perform according to a specific pattern in your relationships? Perhaps you don’t realize it. Take time to identify the role you’ve played in the success (or demise) of your relationships and accept responsibility. Only then can you begin to direct future relationships in the direction you want them to go.
Y – Your lips write your happy (or not-so-happy) ending.
What are you saying? How much do you talk about what was done “to you,” instead of where you’re headed? We possess power to transform our lives by changing how we relate the narrative and tone of past events. But, it’s not until we realize that “we see what we say” that we make essential changes.
We need delicate balance when we’re working on transformation with transparency. I, for one, am still growing and evolving. Nevertheless, I believe parts of my story are redemptive and can prove helpful. But I must properly choose the parts from which I’ve been healed, so I can share appropriately!
As the world leans toward putting on a show for approval in social media platforms, authenticity often stands out. And tales of the journey to ourselves have long-term impact. Will others get the benefit of learning from your life?
Share your thoughts in the comments!