Speaking Your Truth

We all have a voice inside of us, stories that are uniquely ours, and life experiences that no one else has experienced exactly as we have.

Deep in our souls is our truth. At our core is what we believe in, everything that we feel strongly about, and every ounce of who we are. This truth, 100% of it at least, is hardly shared with the outside world.

Bits and pieces of ourselves are released and exposed to a rare few, but much of our core remains in hibernation.

My Word 

I chose authenticity as my word for 2023. I am working on expressing myself fully and not being afraid to be vulnerable and be myself. I don’t want to have to censor my thoughts and feelings, I want to be open and express myself in the way that others seem to do so effortlessly.

Feelings

The feeling of not sharing our truth and expressing ourselves can be very detrimental. We need some sort of outlet for our deepest emotions, whether it be through journaling, writing, or verbally communicating. 

Withholding thoughts causes a lot of inner turmoil. It can create stress and that can lead to even more intense emotions. The older I get, the more I realize just how powerful speaking our truth can be.

Lately

I have been trying very hard to stay true to myself. I am trying to take each situation and conversation that presents itself in my life as a new chance to speak my truth. I still fall, but I am holding myself accountable.

I’ve noticed that when I share my thoughts and feelings, I feel so much lighter…almost like a weight has been lifted from me. When emotions are released it’s almost as if their power is taken away. They can no longer haunt us and cause inner turmoil. They are free to escape and roam, lessening our burdens.

You Are Needed

The world needs your truth, and the world needs YOU. We all add value to this world. We all have stories that we can share to help and inspire others. We deserve to be heard, loved, cared for, and respected as the individuals that we are.

Speaking your truth puts you on the path to freedom.

Who’s ready to start this journey with me?

Just Me, Myself, and I

When I was a young girl, I changed schools very often. My family moved many times during my school years for different reasons.

I enjoyed moving and getting to experience different people, surroundings, and schools, but it also left me alone a lot of the time when I first started at a new school.

Memories

I have memories of eating alone at the lunch table, being picked last in gym class, and just feeling in general like I had no one on my side.

I was an outgoing child, but a very shy and anxious teen. I was embarrassed to be alone, and I felt like it meant that something was wrong with me.

I recall trying to enjoy my lunch in the cafeteria, but at the same time being too distracted from looking around to see if anyone saw me alone.

Alone, But Not Lonely 

I didn’t mind being alone, and I didn’t feel lonely, but like a lot of kids, I was worried about what others thought of me.

In my head, I could hear them thinking “what’s wrong with her?” “Why is she eating alone?” “Does she have friends?”

Growing Up

As I grew older, I started becoming more confident in myself and I slowly broke out of my shell.

I found it easier to communicate and being around others felt more natural. I didn’t let my anxiety take over as I had in the past.

As I matured, I felt like the true me was coming out and I was finally enjoying life!

The Irony

Fast-forward to my young adult and adult years and although I love socializing and being with others, I crave alone time and I need a lot of it!

Ironically, the very thing that had me anxious and embarrassed, is now the one thing that I constantly crave.

Although I don’t like to admit this, I am guilty of turning down a social event or two. I don’t get much time to myself at all these days, and I enjoy having a moment to be in my own company to reflect on life. I try hard to balance this because my loved ones are very important to me.

Just I

I feel as though there is a stigma of being alone or wanting to be alone. I used to wonder how people could travel or eat at a restaurant alone and now I realize that these things are a beautiful and relaxing part of life!

How wonderful it is to be able to be in your own company and be content. I must say that there were many times in my past when I longed for people to be there because at that point they weren’t. It’s possible that because people are fortunately in my life now that I have the choice.

One can also get pretty comfortable wanting to have alone time to the point where it is not healthy.

We all have varying degrees of needing human connection. I do love and thrive on seeing my friends and family, however. I equally love the time that I get to spend just me, myself, and I.

I have found a comfortable place between enjoying my own company and being much less reliant on others to make me happy. Previously, my happiness depended on others, but I have learned to find that within myself.

Whatever Works for YOU!

We are all different and we have to find what makes us happy and find that balance in life.

I feel like this is such a stigma about being alone or wanting to be alone in society today.

I believe that having time alone is crucial to one’s health as is social interaction. Everyone’s view of balance will be different. Some prefer less alone time and more social interactions, while others prefer the exact opposite.

The goal in life is to do what makes you happy!

You Are Leaving a Mark

I had just finished having an early dinner the other day and I decided to walk over to the window that overlooks the deck.

I glanced outside and saw a magnificent sunset. The trees were bare, not a leaf in sight as we head towards the last few weeks of fall and into winter.

My eyes stared at the multi-colored sky and honed in on the beautiful orange color. The branches were so open without the leaves and there it was…my eye caught a bird’s nest.

I Looked Deeper

I got lost in thought as I examined this bird’s nest. It was large and nestled safely in the branches. The nest was empty because it is so cold here, and many of the birds have flown south for the winter.

My mind started to wander. At one point in the spring or summer, a bird created a nest to live in and to have its babies in. The nest was built with love and care and served an amazing purpose.

Given that the weather is so cold here and that there are no leaves left on the trees to hide the nest safely, it appeared as though the nest is abandoned.

Flooded with Emotions 

There I was, peering out of the window, staring at this nest that a bird created many months ago. At one point, this nest was thriving with babies and today it lay abandoned as winter approaches.

Even though most of the birds migrate away from this area once the weather gets cold, they leave a trail behind them.

In this case, a beautiful nest was left behind. One that once represented love, safety, and new life. The birds may be gone, but the beauty and meaning live on.

You Matter 

Every act of kindness that you show and every word that you choose to speak or write lives on in some way. Others will not forget your kind words in times of despair. Your writing is and will continue to impact other people who come across it, even many years down the line.

Every day that you live, you are leaving a mark. Beauty lives on and reminds us of where we have been. You may have moved, changed jobs, or left a relationship, but the impact that you made is never lost.

YOU are important and you matter. YOU are making a difference in this world. The days come and go, but the mark that you leave on this Earth will forever remain.

Read This Before Your Next Birthday

There have been quite a few birthdays lately, which prompted me to write this story. It is interesting how views change over time as we grow.

I had a very different view of my birthday until a few years ago. Growing up, as much as I love being surrounded by people, I didn’t like the idea that everyone was gathering around to celebrate my birthday.

It wasn’t about attention; it was about not wanting people to make a fuss over me.

What I Used to Think

When I was younger, I used to think that it was silly to celebrate my birthday. I really enjoyed celebrating other people’s birthdays, but it felt weird when it came to my own. I didn’t want a gathering just for me. A few people that I know share this feeling.

It wasn’t until a few years ago that my mindset changed about what having a birthday is all about.

Celebrate!

I realize that having a birthday is truly one of life’s greatest gifts. Think about it, a birthday means that you have lived another year and the gift of life is absolutely worth celebrating!

You have experienced one year of trials, growth, lessons, changes, and opportunities. You are still here to tell your story! That is amazing and something worth celebrating.

For those of you that share the same belief that I once did about celebrating your birthday, take note of these things and realize that life is the most precious gift and deserves every bit of acknowledgment. 

Take the day to celebrate the amazing person that you are and don’t forget to make a wish!

Truly Love Yourself

I’ve always heard that you have to love yourself before you can truly love someone else. To be honest, I never really believed that until recently. I always thought that I have plenty of love to give, why couldn’t I possibly love someone completely without 100% loving myself first? I have started to realize why.

We are our own worst critics, possibly because we know ourselves as no one else does, also we know all of our faults and our past. I’m sure that many of you have been given a compliment from someone and you appreciated it so much, yet you didn’t believe it to be true. Maybe you were told that you are a good communicator, that you are attractive, smart, and funny. It was great to hear a sincere compliment from someone, but you didn’t feel it inside and that took some of the joy away from those wonderful words. We are putting distance between ourselves and those that we love when we don’t truly love and have confidence in ourselves.

The act of loving oneself is not saying that you love yourself and your qualities 100% of the time. We all have things that we do not like about ourselves, however, the art of loving yourself comes down to forgiving yourself, being at peace with your past, having confidence in who you are and what you stand for, and truly being able to look in the mirror and tell yourself that you are proud and happy of who you have become.

When we love ourselves wholly, it opens up a brand new world for us to find, we are then able to sincerely love someone else as we can finally share pieces of ourselves that we may have hidden before accepting ourselves.
For those of you that love yourself unconditionally, I am very proud of you for reaching this level of confidence and peace. For those of you that have yet to reach this, I have faith that you will get there and I understand because I have been in your place, sometimes I still find myself there, but I can bring myself back.

The biggest step that I feel has been the most helpful in my life is negating every destructive thought with something positive, or at the very least, neutral. For example, if you are working on a challenging project at work and you are ready to give up, instead of telling yourself “I can’t do this, I am always a failure,” negate that thought to tell yourself that you acknowledge that the project is difficult, but you are trying your best and giving it your all. If you feel that you are not good at relationships you might feel that it’s all your fault and that no one loves you. Instead of this approach, negate that thought to tell yourself that you will work hard on communicating your feelings and that sometimes people are not always compatible.

Start working on all aspects of yourself until you are happy and can confidently say that you love yourself. Once you have mastered loving yourself, the whole world opens up to you and it is then that you will truly be ready to love someone else with your entire heart and soul. Get out a journal, or a piece of paper and write down all of the things that you love about yourself and the things that you are grateful for, you will find out what a mood booster this is!