As humans we are inextricably connected as one species. This connection goes deep and is way beyond our comprehension on a conscious level. We do not question its existence but merely accept it as a universal law of nature. It is human nature to want and need others. We are social beings and as such, need to interact with one another and feel loved, wanted and valued. The saying "no man is an island" applies here. We live together, work together and share our lives with one another - even if for fleeting moments when purchasing a newspaper - there is still that social exchange.
So, what's my point I hear you asking?
Well, it's in our closest relationships those with friends and family that we find the most pleasure and the most pain. As a general rule of thumb, the more you care about a person, the more it hurts when they upset you. It's the value you place on the relationship that gives it the power over you. So, if I was to ask you what your relationship with yourself is like - how would you answer?
It's not often we stop and focus on who we are, what we are about or consider if we like ourselves and are our own best friend. Odd concept, but fundamental to a healthy and positive lifestyle. If you can hand on your heart say you are happy with who you are and where you are at in life, then I congratulate you and urge you to share your life secrets with others. For those of you who haven't quite reached that point yet or are struggling with aspects of your identity, it's worth getting to know yourself better.
How do you do this?
You spend time on your own personal development, have a think about your likes, dislikes, think about what life experiences shaped who you are today. What would you like to happen in your life. Who would you like to be?
Consider this question and answer honestly:
Imagine going to sleep tonight and waking up tomorrow to find you are exactly where you want to be in life as the person you always wanted to be. What does that look like? What is different?
Once you have answered the above, apply it to reality as far as possible - be realistic and see if you can achieve those things.
To support you on your journey, it often helps to have a companion and this could be a therapist. Counselling can help to unblock pathways and explore issues in depth. The relationship between a therapist and client is unique and one that promotes, encourages and supports personal growth. So, if you feel you could benefit from therapy, then don't hesitate to find the right counsellor for you. In the meantime, have a positive mental attitude and remember that you can be whoever you want to be - the only person standing in your way.... is you.
Be kind, have compassion and let yourself be. Care for yourself as you do others... that will kickstart your journey of self-discovery :)