Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about what it means to present as the truest version of myself.
We all have a core inner sense of who we are, but getting to the root of it can be difficult. I think this is because we often look at other people to understand who they are surname think we are. Our beliefs can be carried away by the opinions and feelings of others. This is common in every aspect of our lives — from parenting to work, romantic relationships to friendships.
When we can learn to be who we are, it can be an act of protest against the way that reflex exists, whether it’s through articulating our opinions in conversation. or express ourselves through what we wear.
Our September theme on Wit & Delight is about the power of being who you mean to be.
One of the ways I can practice returning to myself is to ask, “What do I need most right now?” and, whenever possible, follow up with answers. The value of this exercise is not simply that it sometimes allows me to take care of myself. I found it much deeper than that.
Sometimes what we really need is what we are most afraid to do. In fact, showing up to be yourself often means doing hard things for your common good. The more I followed the answer to this question, the stronger my sense of confidence became. I feel less attracted to just focusing on how others respond to me and what they need from me. Instead, I might meet somewhere in between, where their needs meet with mine.
As it turns out, learning not to betray your own needs is an extremely effective way to build confidence in yourself, even if it takes time to get there.
Learning to be yourself is not something that can be rushed. It’s about becoming quiet enough to instinctively listen to what you already know. That’s the culmination that comes from you constantly turning your back, in small, simple ways over and over again.
As we enter September, I encourage you to reflect on methods that allow you to fully express yourself. How can you integrate these methods more often into your daily routine?
Learning to be yourself is not something that can be rushed. It’s about becoming quiet enough to instinctively listen to what you already know. That’s the culmination that comes from you constantly turning your back, in small, simple ways over and over again. Through that kind of gentle, supportive repetition, we become familiar with our wants and needs. In a sense, it’s a lifelong pursuit — one that I think is well worth the effort.
This September on W&D, our collaborators will write about how to build stronger relationships with themselves and share introverts’ self-care guidelines. I’ll be sharing my fall bucket list, the tips I want to give my youth, and a home decor product edit inspired by Sienna Miller’s home tour (I don’t) understandable enough!). I also wanted to share our basement fireplace makeover reveal, as long as it’s done soon… I hope it does! Stay tuned for this and more throughout the coming month.
Outfit your tech with exclusive illustrations from W&D
Sign up for our newsletter to get this month’s downloadable wallpapers for your phone and computer!
Kate is currently learning to play the ukulele, leaving her husband, children and dogs desperate. Follow her on Instagram at @witanddelight_.