My mom always says that lessons are taught until they are learned. This one keeps coming up so I guess I’m still learning it…
The way that I perceive myself and the way that others perceive me is not the same. My friend always tells me to just be my authentic self and that every good thing and good person that is meant to be in my life will come along… drawn like a moth to a flame. Just be yourself. Yourself is amazing he says. Sometimes, when I’m alone and thinking through things, I remember what he says about being my authentic self… and I over think it… I was saying to my counsellor yesterday that sometimes I wonder what ‘self’ that I’m supposed to be to get the best response from people.
Well this morning I was reminded again, that the ‘self’ that I am when I’m not overthinking it is the self that my friend is talking about.
Be you. Be silly. Be friendly. Be crazy and goofy and loving and happy and joyous. Let your real, authentic personality come out and play and the people that don’t like it aren’t people that you want around you anyway…
This morning I was taught (again) that being all those things above pay off.
I missed my regular bus by about 30 seconds… however, not being in the mood (or with the energy… damn this ridiculous fatigue) to run a block or so, I decided to just wait the ten minutes for the next one… So I stood outside in the cold, playing on my iphone… freezing my digits off. And then a bus arrived. ‘Not in Service’ said the flashing sign on the front of the bus. But then the door opened and the driver invited me aboard and said that he’d take me as far as he could down my route and try and catch up with the bus I missed. He said that he remembered me from when he drove my route in the summer.
Now… think that through… That’s someone who remembered me from six months ago… someone who has seen easily thousands of people in the last six months and he remembered me enough to know that he wanted to stop and do something kind for me. We chatted and laughed all the way until we did catch up with the bus that I had missed earlier and my Not in Service Hero pulled in front of that bus so that it would have to stop and then wished me a happy day (in French I think… it was definitely not in English) and I got off his bus and walked back to the one I’d missed. And then something else incredible happened. The driver of the bus I missed saw me… 50 blocks from my usual stop and looked surprised and confused. Opened the door and asked how I got ahead of him and all the way down here…. So I told him I’d missed him by seconds but that I didn’t have the energy to run and then my NIS Hero picked me up and brought me this far. And you know what he said? ‘I looked for you when I went past your stop and I thought about waiting a second but I didn’t see you so I had to keep going.’. I was so touched that he knew I should have been there and he actually looked for me… what a kind sentiment!
When I got to work I went to the coffee shop I always go to and saw my young barista friend… our faces mutually light up when we see eachother and we always share a chat and a smile before going about our days. Today we laughed about taking over the world and then that’s when the events of the morning sort of hit me. I’ve left a lasting impression on these people just by being me.
Sometimes our self-perception gets in the way of being able to see how others perceive us… I can say for certain that I need to be reminded constantly that the ‘real me’… the ‘self’ that my friend encourages… she’s the key to my happiness. At no time am I more joyous and friendly and silly and loving and happy as when I am being shown that being those things consistently start a perpetual circle. Being joyous and happy and silly and loving makes me feel those… which make me want to be those… It takes practice to let ‘real me’ out of the dark because it hurts more when ‘real me’ is rejected or wounded, but oh my… the rewards when ‘real me’ is welcomed by the world with open arms and good deeds and smiles and the kind of human love that boosts my spirit!
It’s difficult to not bring all of this back around to health and fitness. When your body is quiet and content, it’s just enormously easier to hear the other things going on. I remember my sister saying that when she switched her diet to the paleo/primal way of eating, she could hear her own thoughts easier… it was difficult to understand and I’m sure it was difficult for her to explain, but boy, she wasn’t wrong. When Body is taken care of and not a massive urgent concern to Mind, then Mind gets to focus on other things. Mind gets to have epiphanies and process ideas and information in a pure uninterrupted way that is not feasible when Mind is too busy worrying that Body is a train wreck.
So I’ll go through the rest of my day… week… month… trying to remember that being authentic is the key and I will be duly rewarded in my life by authentic people and experiences. And the rest will just fall away like dust in the wind…