Far too many of us spend our time trying to blend in, fake it and be perfect. We fear that “being yourself” will lead to rejection. In this week’s episode of The Baggage Reclaim Sessions, I tackle the importance of reconciling with the truth of who you are: the real you. I also delve into why pretending to be something we’re not is about self-rejection, and why if the fake version of us is rejected, it’s not the rejection we perceive it to be.
Some nuggets from the episode:
- Being yourself:- all the things that you would be and do if you weren’t listening to that voice in your head saying “You should do this and you should do that”. Or all the things that you’d be and do if you weren’t so afraid of displeasing others.
- People wrestle with being themselves when it comes to:
1) Being afraid of rejection as part of the day-to-day of life.
2) Recovering from situations where they believe they were rejected.
- People who continuously worry about whether they’re going to experience rejection can’t be themselves because they’re always on guard.
- People who struggle to be themselves are often convinced of one of two things when they experience rejection:1) That they were themselves and that they still got rejected anyway. They then believe that being yourself is “wrong”.
2) That they weren’t themselves and they still got rejected anyway, so it must mean that they’re worthless, good for nothing, not “good enough”.
When we blend in and try to be what we think others want, our life doesn’t feel very satisfactory because, well, it’s not our life. It’s based on a fake version of us.
- Some of the questions I ask people who are convinced that they were rejected for being themselves:
- Did you pretend to be something you’re not?
- Was there an aspect of you that you felt too embarrassed to reveal?
- Was there something you were trying to convince them of?
- Did you struggle with boundaries?
- Did you say yes when you really wanted or needed to say no?
- Were you seeking their approval?
- Did thoughts of being rejected grip you even when you were supposed to be enjoying yourself?
- Did you feel like you did as a child?
- Were you afraid of being alone?
- Did you play games or follow ‘rules’?
- Were you trying to be perfect?
- What a lot of us do, whether it’s in business or life is we spend a lot of time trying to hide our secret sauce: the stuff that makes the magic in us, that brings the magic to our relationships, that brings the magic to what we create or the service that we give.
We can’t be copied. We’re not replaceable. Who is replaceable? The fake version of us.
- When we try to blend in, to be what we think others want of us, we could be anyone.
- When we have a replacement mentality and so obsess about who’s going to replace us, it’s because we came from a place of behaving as if we were replacing someone else. That’s how we move through life: trying to work out what somebody else was about and trying to copy that and uplevel it a bit because we think this will get us what we want.
When we pretend to be something we’re not, and then we experience rejection, it’s not the real us that got rejected. It’s the fake us.
- Only people who seek to benefit, profit or exploit it, are in interested in you faking it.
- The only reason why we want to blend in or try to be perfect is that we’re still living in the past.
- There are [stories, beliefs] inside of me that I’ve gradually unsubscribed from over the years because they don’t serve who I really am and where I want to go.
- Our negative feelings give us a clue about where we’re telling us untrue stories.
- Friction is the correct consequence of blending in and the perfectionism. This helps us break these habits so that we become more of who we really are.
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