Where do you find direction towards that place of contentment, peace of mind and connection? Your Middle Ground?
The first step is all about self discovery – really getting to know yourself.
Often we think of ourselves in terms of the roles we have in this life – in our families as parent, sister or spouse, or at work as an employee or professional, or in communities as a neighbor or volunteer etc. We’re so bound up with others that we miss getting to understand ourselves. We think we know ourselves, but we often only see ourselves in relation to other people.
Ask yourself, “Who am I … without my children, my grandchildren, my spouse, my career?”….
Take time to get to know yourself and become aware of who you really are – your natural talents, core beliefs, values, needs, passions, triggers and fears. Much of what you will discover has come from those around you … yet there is so much more that is uniquely you! So freeing!
When we start to explore who we are, and see all aspects of ourselves, we can become authentic in the world. No longer trying to live up to others’ expectations or playing a role. Our mask can be set aside and we become free to let our true nature shine through.
You become more grounded and confident, courageous and compassionate.
In my experience there are 2 ways to get to know yourself in this way:
The first way to self discovery can come from yoga and the practice of mindfulness. Noticing without judgment what is going on in your mind and your body, and acknowledging it is incredibly powerful. I recall times on my yoga mat, when my left hip flexor tightens for no apparent reason. In the beginning I wanted the discomfort to go away and so I worked to stretch it out even more. Taking it to its limits in order to bring it into my idea of what it should be. Of course, I came across more resistance and more contraction instead. When I realized it needed some tender loving care and I backed off, the pain dissipated. I swear that hip of mine hears my thoughts!
Once you see and feel more clearly, you can choose to respond more skillfully and appropriately. My biggest lesson about myself in yoga is letting go of needing to control and accepting the way my body is….. and not to trust my thinking as being the truth.
The second way to self discovery is by taking a coach approach and getting curious. Start to ask yourself and answer these questions:
What are the best moments of my week?
What brings me happiness and joy?
What do I do at an excellent level?
What am I afraid of?
What beliefs, values and needs are important to me?
(Tip – Notice what makes you angry, because it is usually a belief or value that has been transgressed or an unmet need)
What do I want that I don’t have?
…. What else comes to mind about who you are and what you want?
In this place of questions and discovery, you may find it hard to access this inner part of yourself, or lots of judgments come up……. and that’s okay. It shows that there is room to grow into your true self!
This is just the beginning.
I truly enjoy connecting with those of you beginning this journey. Please reach out to me privately if you’d like a guide and supporter:
I recently came across your website and find the posts inspirational. For a while now i’ve wanted to work on finding my inner peace. Although i know that this takes time, i have no idea where to start. There are also so many branches to this topic, so how do i know which one is “right”? Do you have any tips, ideas, books, or videos that can get me started?
Thank you for your time!
Hi Nat, thank you for reaching out. I’m glad that you have found the posts inspiring. Yes, the journey takes time, and begins with slowing down to become aware of our thoughts, beliefs, emotions and behaviors. There are many paths that lead to the same destination within us. Take your time and find the way that feels right to you. Please explore more on this site to get more ideas, and feel free to contact me directly. I would love to connect.
Thanks. This is a brilliant post and very appropriate for me right at this moment. Thanks for the link.
So glad you found this helpful Elizabeth.
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