This post is written by Cephas Tope, originally published on livepurposefullynow.com
Do you sometimes feel inadequate, inefficient and unsatisfied with your current status?
Do you find yourself battling with self realization and not knowing exactly what to do?
If this is the case chances are you’re not staying true to yourself.
What does it mean to stay true to yourself?
It means to be completely honest with yourself, staying faithful to your values, being sincere, open-minded and fair.
It doesn’t mean that you look down on people or that you’re disrespectful.
It means that you will not let others define you or choose for you, it means you are capable of making choices for your life and able to take responsibility for it.
Below are 5 signs you are not true to yourself.
1. Following the path of instant gratification
Being true to yourself requires you to know what you want in life and are willing to follow the path that leads you towards it.
But most times, we try to satisfy our immediate desires without much thought of how it will impact our lives.
What am I getting at here?
Each time you reach for that double cheeseburger packed with processed chemicals and dripping in trans fat, knowing it will surely add to your already excess pounds is the kind of instant gratification that won’t help if you want to be at your healthiest and happiest.
Or if you impetuously decide to go on that expensive shopping trip for new clothes knowing your bank account is close to empty, that euphoria you had when you started won’t last and not only will your bank account be empty, but so will you.
Doing these things to satisfy your desires without thinking of its effect, is a warning sign that you’re not being true to yourself.
I am not saying you shouldn’t have fun or give yourself a nice treat, but you need to be smart about your choices and consider their consequences, whether they are harmful or helpful.
Next time you’re tempted, stop to think about the effect it will bring, whether now or in the future, by doing so, you’re being authentic and real to yourself.
2. Following someone else’s script
Most people have their life scripted from birth to death, their whole lives have been carefully mapped out by cultural rules that dictate to them what they must wear, whom they must marry, how they must behave and even the careers they should pursue.
These rules are most times enforced by families…and the victims of this situation, although not thrilled with these rules, dare not question it, for fear of being cast out of the family unit.
Eventually, they end up not fulfilling their true dreams and living a fake life.
If this is the kind of life you’re living, then you’re not staying true to yourself, and you’re only serving the desires of those rule makers in your life. Those, who will never have to live that life out for themselves.
Some of these rules may not in themselves be harmful, but you need to ask yourself, “Is this what I want for my life”?
If no, then you have to find the courage to break free from this script handed over to you and make your own rules so you can start living your dream life.
And the freedom and peace of mind you’ll enjoy will be well worth any challenges you may have to overcome.
3. Fear of change
Some people have lived a particular kind of lifestyle for some time which may not be making them happy, but fear to make changes and prefer the easier route of doing what everyone else around them is doing because inertia keeps them stuck.
And let’s be honest here, it’s often really difficult to step out of the safe place you’ve been living in, even if it is truly better for you.
In other words, many people fear to stand at the edge of their comfort zone or even step out of it.
There are so many people like this, and if you’re one of them, then you’re definitely not staying true to yourself.
Making change is not easy, and it will definitely not happen all of a sudden, but you must be patient enough to see it through.
As Roy T Bennet says: “Do not lie to yourself. We have to be honest about what we want and take risks rather than lie to ourselves and make excuses to stay in our comfort zone.”
4. People pleasing can never lead to staying true to yourself
So many people find it hard to make decisions on their own, and such life abhors a vacuum, someone will always step in and make decisions for them.
Who wants to be the one to follow or imitate others because of a desire to please others, or for fear of looking bad or rude.
Someone once said when you don’t follow your dreams, someone else will gladly use you to fulfill theirs.
How true is this?
It is so true but only If you allow it.
You can become a lifelong puppet in someone else’s hands if you are not willing to find and follow your own dreams.
But it’s never too late; you can make the right decision today to stop and take an entirely different route that will lead you to your dream life.
5. Attaching your self worth to the opinion of others
Most of us learned from an early age that to be successful in life, we have to get good grades in school, graduate with a high GPA and then work the “9-5” white collar job.
Sounds like fun doesn’t it?
Many grew up with this idea in their head and built their self-worth around it so that if they find themselves struggling for a good grade in school or trying to manage a job that takes all their time and energy with close to no reward, they start feeling inadequate.
Maybe you’re currently experiencing this, and you cannot think of quitting your job because of what people will think or say about you.
Because the “9-5” is what everybody else is doing and you don’t want to be the odd one out by doing something else, something that is far from usual.
You’re not staying true to yourself if this is the mindset you carry.
If you want to be successful and happy and fulfilled, then you must be willing to break the trend and become an innovator, making your own mark by doing that which adds more value to your life.
Do not hesitate to join the likes of those breaking the norms today, be true to yourself and enjoy the freedom you deserve.
You will never know your true capabilities unless you step out of your comfort zone.
So, don’t be too nervous to try, don’t be afraid to fail, don’t be scared to jump into your the world that is right for you, that’s there for the living.
Many will call you foolish; they will look at your decisions and call it ridiculous; some will even laugh and call you a dreamer.
But as long as you know what you want and what you are aiming for, as long as you have a goal to reach, it doesn’t matter what they say because your determination will drive you to your success.
If you’re ready to turn your world around, you can begin today by staying true to yourself.