Think carefully about what's important to you, and become a self-influencer
Meditation is a part of my “almost everyday” practice. Whenever I take advantage of it, I ask for guidance on how I can be of service to those who read my writing.
What arose recently was how we must address our mental health needs by blasting through the damaging messages of “who you need to be” to find happiness and success, instead of the far more important question of who you are.
Who you are is found in your values, your north star if you will.
Imagine for a moment that you were so in touch with your values that if you were asked to do something that wasn’t aligned, you’d know exactly what to do. Even if it was hard because then you’d feel your inner strength.
That feeling, of knowing you’ve honored who you are, is one of the biggest gifts you can give yourself. But it doesn’t come easily.
Why it’s hard to honor who you are
The challenge is that we’re living in a world in which the messaging continues to tell you that who you are isn’t enough, that you need to be someone else to achieve success, feel happy, and fulfilled.
This creates an incredible mental and emotional strain.
Instead of self-assurance, you’re plagued with anxiety and doubt as you try to push through to being someone you’re not.
Consider the term “influencer”.
Frankly, I really hate that word and all it’s come to stand for.
Recently a friend shared that her young granddaughter’s aspiration is to be an influencer. I asked, perhaps naively, of what?
Oh, that wasn’t too clear, but there’s money to be made.
What I don’t seem to see or hear anywhere, is any sense of the responsibility of someone in that role. What are their values, and what kind of difference do they hope to make in the world?
Which begs the question….
What does “influencer” mean to you? Have you ever asked yourself why you follow one person over another? What is it about them or their messaging that appeals to you?
Know your values, know your worth
Have you given any thought as to why you follow some people and their work? Is it because you like the image they present and who you believe you need to be and you want to model them? Or is it because they speak to the values you hold?
And there it is, the term that’s fallen out of favour, because knowing your values isn’t a quick and easy process that someone else can tell you.
Knowing what you care about, at your core, is work. The kind of work that impacts your entire life.
It’s my deep belief that to start resolving the mental health crisis, more attention needs to be placed on the internal journey, instead of the external.
When you have a better understanding of who you are, and what you need, then it’s easier to make hard decisions. Even the ones that go against what you’re told are necessary for your external success.
Recently, that meant I disappeared from almost every platform I normally appear on, for several months. I was dancing with depression. What made it “easier”, is by knowing my values and following what I need to do for my mental wellness, I made the decisions that were right for me.
That knowledge has come through years of determined personal growth.
It’s that solidness of self and standing firm that leads people to want to know and be with you. We are living in tumultuous times. To successfully navigate them means taking the time to evaluate who you are and what you stand for. If it's been a while since you've taken the time to do that, I encourage you to start now.
If you’re ready to get off the treadmill of the influencer-led and become a self-influencer, start with your values. Know those and you’re well on your way to creating a happier and more fulfilled life.
If you'd like guided help, I still offer to a select group of people, a course called Awake. It’s designed to lead you through the steps of creating practices and deepening knowledge of self, so that you become self influenced, instead of other influenced.
If you'd like information, message me, and I'll give you the details.