Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Taking advice and being who we really are.

Normally in life, when I have a problem, I talk to all my friends and family about it and end up with lots of voices in my head (theirs, rather than ones relating to any sort of insanity – I learned to tune those out years ago, after that second murder...) each giving me advice on what I should do.

I don’t mind that; I like knowing what other people think I ought to do (if only because it provides food for my innate desire to do the opposite of what people say).  The downside is that sometimes it’s hard to know what to do because there are so many pieces of advice floating around.  It can get a bit confusing.

Recently I’ve had a bit of space from my usual confidants for one reason and another and it’s been interesting.  I’ve found my own ‘voice’ in my mind is clearer and I can better understand what I want, how I feel, what I think I should do.  It’s been affirming to realise the course of action I’ve taken/am taking is the one I think is right.

I’m not about to change my usual way of dealing with things, and will no doubt be chewing my friends’ ears off again in the near future.  But sometimes we can get so caught up in what everyone else thinks, in the way other people believe we should live our lives, that we forget what it means to be ‘us’.  It’s easy to think other people know better how to live – a symptom of low self-esteem if ever there was one – and to try and emulate, or even please, them.  But who says they’re right?

Someone I know on Facebook posted the picture I’ve included on this post yesterday and it really struck me.  More than anyone else in my life, I am the one who makes me feel inferior, or ‘worthless’.  And I suspect I’m not the only one.

But we’re not worthless.  No one else is ‘better’ than us at living this life; we’re all just making it up as we go along.  And whilst it’s good to take advice and listen to trusted people, it’s just that – advice.  Our own choices/feelings/beliefs are equally valid.

And sometimes it’s those we need to trust.

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