It sounds like winning advice, truly. And yet in application, it’s like opening pandora’s box to find a million different Ikea parts and no instructions or idea of what to build.
“Just” be yourself
Just. Like it’s so easy. My God. Just take out the trash. Just turn on the TV. Just call your mom. Just be yourself.
Yes, just “be” yourself.
JUST BE MYSELF?
Being myself is not easy. It requires:
- Knowing myself
- Examining my past
- Thinking about my future
- Being honest with myself
- Learning about my “strengths” and “weaknesses”
- Bringing out my best qualities and fighting through the bad ones
- Loving who I am
- Appreciating who I am
- Accepting who I am
- Learning why I hate myself so much to begin with.
What I need in place of the “just” is a hard hat and instructions, and a really good health insurance plan that covers all the things.
The reality is, myself is full of lots of struggles and dreary droopy dark days. This does not make for a great self to be around. Yet who I am has been a constant navigation of these trepid waters.
I think just be yourself assumes that we’ll all be sunny rosy laughter when we’re being ourselves. What if we’re gloomy? What if we’re honest? What if we’re raw? What if we’re uncomfortable AF – ourselves and for you?
Just be… yourself?*
*but like everybody else.
Because what if you don’t fall in line with the values of the beholder? What if you’re queer? What if you’ve lost faith? What if you’re politically dense or demonic?
We don’t want everyone to be themselves. It’s pretty darn conditional. We kinda really want people to be like ourselves and/or within the parameters of our comfort.
If I was myself, like myself myself, I’d be a hazard to myself. Do you know why people are afraid to be themselves? Because people can’t handle the truth. (That’s my OOTD = Overstatement Of The Day)
And what if your self? Your self is unaccepted the way that it is? What if you are Black, what if you are fat, what if you have melanin, what if you are Muslim? What if you’re Muslim but the kind most Muslims don’t agree with? What if you’re what if you’re what if you’re?!?!?!?
To be oneself, one must know thy self, to know thy self, one must see thy self.
And what if you grew up rarely or never seeing yourself? In stories, in books, in TV, in movies, in magazines, on billboards, on the beach.
Just being yourself is like putting together broken pieces of mannequin made out of lunch meat. It’s a terrible process.
Just be yourself.
There’s something Godly and spiritual and purposefully impractical about it – a caution to the wind, a go hard or go home, a sinking ship fancy Titanic party.
Alas, it’s not all bad, like my blog may lead you to believe.
To you, to myself, I bequeath us:
Dig hard, deep, with your blood, sweat, and tears; to learn yourself, to appreciate the self you have come to be; work hard, so hard, to form a self that doesn’t harm others, including you; and embrace yourself, the gift of you, no matter how un-Brady / un-Instagrammable / imperfect you are; and accept that you are the sum of all things in this very moment, nothing less and nothing more – yourself… being… you. already.
We’re just being ourselves all along.