Someone dear to me recently told me: Talking to you makes my soul sing.
I truly believe this came from an honest space inside this person, which is why it moved me deeply. It however also did something else to me: it made me super-aware of the fact that there is a part of me that really (like: REALLY) thrives when people tell me something they like or love about me.
When I dig a little deeper inside myself and into this feeling I notice it has to do with a belief inside myself that I’m not worthy/good enough/lovable/beautiful/etc. unless someone else tells me that I am. Is this something you recognize perhaps? I believe that this feeling is pretty common deep inside a lot of people.
I think that on an intellectual level it’s pretty easy to tell yourself that you don’t need (or crave) other people to tell you that you’re worthy/good enough/lovable/beautiful/etc. There are tons of books to read and social media quotes to feed yourself with, all about self-love and compassion. But does that really work? Can I read a book or a bunch of quotes and after that truly, deeply and honestly feel differently about myself? Believe me, I have tried. I’m telling you hereby what I have found and that’s this: It. Does. Not. Work.
So what to do? For me, the first and most important thing is about being aware of exactly what is happening. In my case: my friend tells me something really wonderful about me and I notice that a part of me gets high when I hear this. After digging deeper I notice that this particular part of me feels the need for other people to validate me in order to feel worthy/good/loved/beautiful/etc. So what is this part? I call him Lennart. If you’ve not read this blog before: Lennart is the voice of my mind. And Lennart has perfected the art of making me believe he = me. Without awareness, I fail to see that this belief I have actually is not me but instead is the voice of my mind speaking. Without awareness, Lennart is running the show and has me going around trying to get as much validation from other people about myself as I possibly can. This can be an extremely subconscious process since it is rooted so deeply inside myself. And it is also very exhausting in the long run. Because it takes a lot of energy to constantly try to find my next hit of validation from other people.
Thankfully I have spent a lot of time doing deep inner work, so I’m nowadays often able to catch Lennart pretty quickly. For me it took many years (and honestly a lot of courage) to face all that is inside me and work with and (partly) through that. It involved every part of me: the physical, the spiritual and the psychological. It also is a process that I never will (or want to) finish. I like to call myself a seeker and that’s exactly what it is about for me: a never-ending willingness and commitment to seek further, explore and go deeper inside myself to find truth and wisdom.
So, my friend tells me something incredibly lovely about myself. I choose to put aside Lennart and what’s left is a very still feeling inside myself. At the same time as it’s still, it’s extremely powerful. Powerful in a quiet way. I can’t find better words to describe it. The feeling is deep and relaxing in my body. And it tells me: I am OK. Just as I am. Imperfect and beautiful. Powerful and vulnerable. I am here to illuminate the world in my own unique way and it’s time for me to shine. To be continued!
To my friend (you know who you are)
Thank you for your words. I am grateful you are in my life, challenging and encouraging me to explore my truth. With love ♥
Photo: Jordan Steranka – unsplash.com