âI am Me. In all the world, there is no one else exactly like me. Everything that comes out of me is authentically mine, because I alone chose it — I own everything about me: my body, my feelings, my mouth, my voice, all my actions, whether they be to others or myself. I own my fantasies, my dreams, my hopes, my fears. I own my triumphs and successes, all my failures and mistakes.
Because I own all of me, I can become intimately acquainted with me. By so doing, I can love me and be friendly with all my parts. I know there are aspects about myself that puzzle me, and other aspects that I do not know — but as long as I am friendly and loving to myself, I can courageously and hopefully look for solutions to the puzzles and ways to find out more about me. However I look and sound, whatever I say and do, and whatever I think and feel at a given moment in time is authentically me.
If later some parts of how I looked, sounded, thought, and felt turn out to be unfitting, I can discard that which is unfitting, keep the rest, and invent something new for that which I discarded. I can see, hear, feel, think, say, and do. I have the tools to survive, to be close to others, to be productive, and to make sense and order out of the world of people and things outside of me. I own me, and therefore, I can engineer me. I am me, and I am Okay.â – Virginia Satir, American psychotherapist and educator
Over the previous two weeks, weâve discussed how decisions about independence come down to internally-driven or choices made about and for oneself. Â Whether living with fear or faith or how to harness oneâs fear, being comfortable with being alone is essential to living out the consequences of our choices.
Many people make their decisions based upon their ability to be alone – for both personal and professional reasons. This weekâs installment is pretty brief, because, quite frankly, there are very few ways to ask: are you able to be alone? Itâs more than just being okay with a stint in solitary confinement. Being alone requires an ability to accept and acknowledge who you are, independent of anyone else. It requires an ability to trust yourself.
Without the ability to accept, trust and love oneself, no true foundation can be built for your life.
Here are a few ways to help cultivate an awareness of yourself:
- Journaling – rather than a literal list of the dayâs events, use journal entries to ask yourself questions. âWhat did I learn today?â âWhat about today made me the happiest?â
- Meditation – just by spending 15 minutes in silence and concentrating on your breathing, you can gain a greater awareness of yourself. Itâs very difficult to quiet your mind. As thoughts flit across your consciousness, jot them down and release them. Eventually, youâll gain greater control over your mind. Here is more about the benefits of mediation.
- Yoga – even something as stretching for a small amount of time each day can help you become more aware of your physical self. Yoga helps to heighten your senses, your flexibility and fitness.
- Reflect – Look back at times in your life where you were alone. What were the positive aspects of these periods? What made you uncomfortable?
By paying attention to our own voice, we can discern what we value as opposed to what society tells us we should value. Having information like this helps us to chose situations that will lead to our independence: financial, personal, professional. Having that stability ultimately makes us more effective people.
Molly Cantrell-Kraig is a woman with drive. Possessing an innate sense of purpose and a pragmatic, solution-based approach to empowering people, she fused these two traits in order to establish Women With Drive Foundation. Based upon its founder’s personal history, Women With Drive Foundation is a means through which Cantrell-Kraig may effect change on both a micro and macro level. By providing women with something as essential as personal transportation in order to transition them from poverty to prosperity, she, through Women With Drive Foundation, seeks to empower women to help them help themselves. Through this action, the individual applicant benefits, as does society as a whole. Follow Molly on twitter asÂ @mckra1g orÂ @WWDr1ve (Women With Drive)