As a child and adolescent I spent a great deal of time trying to fit in. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was looking for validation in the eyes of others. This was, of course, unachievable. But I wanted to have friends…and to be liked by the “popular” kids. After a while, I realized that those popular kids were not what they seemed. Many of them spent their time putting down others, presumably to pump themselves up. Eventually I discovered a secret.
Now I have a best friend who will always be with me. That friend is myself! Once I looked inwardly I realized that I was a pretty special person…and you will likely discover that too. There were things about myself that I absolutely loved, some that I was just okay with and then things that I really didn’t like. But being the master of my own destiny I was able to change those things to traits that I liked or at least could live with.
Then a funny thing happened…as I became my own best friend I found that I was able to form more meaningful bonds with others. You see, if you don’t like yourself you cannot like (or love) others. It comes from within. Also, others will see your value by reading your body language, which is heavily affected by your sense of self-worth. So when you look into your own soul you are reflecting the impressions outwardly for the whole world to see.
I see people all the time who seem to think that they must have the latest fashion or the swankiest house to entice people to like them. But they are often spending money they don’t have on things they don’t need to impress people they don’t know who don’t care at all about them or what they have! Make no mistake, if you drive a Ferrari I don’t hold it against you, but I don’t admire you for it either. If it makes you happy to spend the money you worked hard for on a car, that is your choice. But if you are doing to impress others, then you are looking for validation in the wrong place. That is a game that can never be won. In fact, it will only leave you feeling empty and alone.
Likewise, getting married or being in a relationship to “complete” oneself is another form of cop-out. You can’t be a productive member of any relationship until you are honest about yourself and are comfortable with who you are.
So take a look at yourself. Life is a continuous learning experience. If you want to be happy, be honest with yourself and learn to like who you are. If you don’t like what you see, you are the only one who can change that. Your destiny, your happiness, is your responsibility…that is what it means to be free!