Honoring who you are

by Jill Sockman

I go on a lot about honoring where you are and the importance of in-the-moment acceptance of yourself at any given time. Whether acknowledging anger and disappointment or recognizing success, tiredness, overwhelm — the list is endless — there is value in shifting out of the ongoing internal dialogue we engage in about what is, and into feeling it in the moment and letting it go.

Alongside the development of mindfulness as a practice of self-care is the task of accepting yourself as who you are. I haven’t yet decided if one is easier or harder, or if one should come before the other. For me, they seem to be intertwined along the path of self-understanding, and it’s revealed to me on a regular basis that that particular path takes your whole lifetime. It’s a long path. Very long. Like not going to see the end.

The power of the where you are mindfulness practice is that the longer you do it, the more it illuminates the Big Truth that you are not any of the things you are constantly experiencing. You’re not the physical sensations, you’re not the thoughts, not the emotions. You learn to see the patterns your personality claims, is attached to or averse to, and the holes into which you’ll fall again and again if not consistent with the work. It’s a layer of self understanding, or perhaps the lifting of a single veil of what you are not to get a little closer to what you are.

On the other hand, the who you are part is the firmer, more in tact, less malleable part of you. We’re still not talking about the essential nature of Self, but rather your constitution, your composition, your core. While some of that morphs and grows over time, it’s not so changeable as the moment to moment feelings. And it’s in the accepting of who you are that you can really address your needs in a powerful way, as when you stop trying to be something you aren’t you can really claim who and what you are, and make better choices to support your happiness and well-being.

Are you a thinker or a doer? A builder? A dreamer? What are you motivated by? What moves you, shakes you, keeps you up at night? Do you need time with the masses to find inspiration or time in seclusion? What inspires you, and where do you go to connect to source? What do you love the most? Who makes you laugh the hardest? In what environments do you suffer or thrive? And how many of your day-to-day choices support the many facets of who you are, while regularly, gently pressing appropriately into edges where there are opportunities to grow? While there is always more to learn, to try, to explore, a core understanding of self and an orientation around those needs and desires is yet another layer of self care as we project ourselves into our lives, offering our own unique vibration into the world.