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I have heard the expression searching for myself … and it is one I understand even as much as I find it a bit odd. Too many people go away to find themselves when the real you lives inside of you.When you get to know the real you, things and people do not move you so much because there is a core to who you are. I read this article and it got me thinking. The writer spoke about someone she met who took a year to travel and know herself. Here are excerpts below:
I asked her what it was like to spend eight months traveling alone. Was it hard to meet people? Was it lonely? To me, the idea of spending a day wandering around a city, shopping and going to a museum alone is bliss, more than that and I start to feel a little lonely. She said that being on her own it was actually easier to meet people. And then she said something that really struck me. She said to travel that long by yourself — you have to really know yourself.
And that caught my attention. I have come across so many people who are really uncomfortable with their own company. They can’t spend more than a few hours alone and seem to be scared of their thoughts. Something else from the article that caught my attention:
You have to learn about yourself, she elaborated — what you like, what interests you, who you truly are. Because when you are traveling that long with only a small bag for your things, who you are is no longer defined in part by the job you have, what neighborhood you live in, what car you drive, the purse you carry and the things you can afford to surround yourself with. It is about you — as a human being — traveling along, experiencing life and the people you meet.
When you get to know the real you, you become authentic and one of the most important parts to living a fulfilled life is authenticity.
If you are wondering how to know yourself here are 10 steps from the author:
1. Listen to your gut — it’s rarely wrong.
2. Decompress alone — yoga, walking, meditation, running, exercise; turn everything off on a regular basis and just be.
3. Think about what you loved when you were a child — horses, bike riding, sewing — and reconnect with those things and see how they make you feel today.
4. Embrace creativity. My friend Alison Arden wrote a terrific book called The Book of Doing that speaks to the many ways you can do this (and also to the last point).
5. Slow down. When we move too fast, we miss so much.
6. Don’t be concerned with what other people think. Really. And this one is hard to do.
7. Get enough sleep. Read Thrive by Arianna Huffington for more on this.
8. Be curious. In my interviews on my online show “Perspectives with Katie Kempner,” time and again my guests discuss how important it has been in their careers and lives to stay curious. As we get older, it gets harder to do and yet it becomes even more important.
9. Choose to be happy. This one is really up to you but isn’t it so much nicer to get to know a happy person?
10. Be present. So hard to do when there are so many mindless ways to eat up our time. But necessary so you can focus on you.
As we start the new year chock full of resolutions and new paths, it’s time to take yourself out to a little café, sit at a wooden table with a yummy salad and hopefully warm bread (and a nice glass of wine) and get to know how fabulous you truly are.
Read the full article on the Huffington Post.