Love-Life Tip: Be Yourself In Love

I’m sure you’ve heard this tired old expression more than once, “be yourself!” It’s the advice we usually give each other when one of us is trying to be something or someone other than who we really are. Unfortunately it is common for a person to try to solve life’s problems by taking on a false identity. The assumption is, if I ‘act’ like such and such, people will accept me and love me as such and such. The misguidance in this solution is tragic, because the only chance you ever have to be really loved is if and when you are being your ‘self.’

Just in case you haven’t noticed, we’re all unique individuals (check your thumbprint). Simply put, that uniqueness is your true self, period, end of story. The real meaning of the phrase, “be yourself!” is “be your unique self!” The uniqueness of you was there at the beginning when you came into this world and will be there when you exit. You don’t have to put it on or make it one thing or another. The uniqueness of you is original and essentially you. If you get out of your own way, you will be you with no effort at all. The problem is a lot of people don’t know their unique self because they’ve learned to block it with something else.

If you were to learn how to live from that place in you that is fundamentally unique, your life would change for the better. I can’t tell you how many people I meet in my business who don’t know who they really are. They think they are whatever roles or characters they have learned to play over the course of their lives. Having had some personal experience with this, I can tell you it usually falls apart when you get to middle-age. Something happens inside for a lot of middle-aged people (30 to 50). They start feeling like the way they’ve been living is not genuine enough and no longer works for them.

If you get to the point where you know you need a change, there’s a good chance that how you’ve been living up to this point was created by other people’s expectations of you. A lot of this gets formed in family of origin relationships. We incorporate so much of what our families and other people think of us in an effort to get their love. That uniqueness I mentioned earlier, gets lost inside somewhere. Unfortunately, we’re rarely taught to pay close attention to who we really are on the inside.

When you pay attention and value the clues that show up, you get glimpses of who you really are. The point is to live comfortably and fully from that unique place inside of you. When you start to feel like it’s time to make a change and live truer to who you are, it’s both exciting and scary. Exciting because it’s freeing. Scary because you’ll be leaving behind the customary well practiced familiar ways of conducting yourself in the world.

When a person lives true to his or her original uniqueness, life is much more meaningful and deeper. Unfortunately, if you don’t do something about it when you start to feel dissatisfied with yourself, your unhappiness can turn into symptoms of some kind of illness. It’s the mind-body’s way of letting you know that you’re blocking something important from happening.

Once you get used to the change and start to feel more comfortable with your original unique self out in the open, love is one of those things that will be easier and will feel more fulfilling. Think about it, being yourself makes it easier to give the love you’ve got to give and get the love you need. This is because there are fewer inside interferences when you feel like giving love, and it’ll be easier for people who love you to find you when they have love to give you because you’re being your real self.  Dr. T. Jordan

Dr. Jordan

Dr. Thomas Jordan is a clinical psychologist, certified interpersonal psychoanalyst, author, professor, and love life researcher.

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