Myself. Earlier this year I thought I was doing just that but I was only half way in. You might remember my post sharing how things changed and my empty heart towards the photography business. But in today’s post I’m sharing that I finally announced it to the public that I’m quitting the business. That’s right!
It was just way too much for me to have to pretend on social media and post wedding related things. I did turn some things around and started sharing more personal photos and I’m sure there were people who picked up on that but to finally just come out and say it is such a relief. I can breathe, rest easy and not worry (at least not too much) about posting work things. So what did I do? Well after I announced it I felt like I had to put some make up and take a selfie–but of course! And the photo above was taken after several attempts but this makes me smile and my heart skip a beat. Because it marks a new journey. Well, maybe I shouldn’t say that. Because I’ve already started my new journey when I decided to not give all my energy to the business. I believe the right words would be, this marks the path of rediscovering myself. What I use to like, what I use to do when I was in-tune with myself.
So I read this article that really help to put it into perspective. And here are some of the things I took away from it:
…Or suddenly you wake up one day and realize you don’t know who you are. You feel empty, you don’t even like yourself. You feel like running away. You want your real self back, but who is that anyway.
Then again, whole chunks of yourself–even your entire soul–can be overwhelmed or frighten away be severe shock, or trauma, or loss.
I may have lost a part of myself, but I’m calling her back. I’m reclaiming all the lost joy, exuberance, confidence, power, and dignity. Any and all parts that were lost. Whatever you lost, you can get it back too…
And in this article the author wrote out steps on how to reclaim yourself. It starts with recognizing the loss. I remember when I first had thoughts of not being happy with the way life was. I contributed it to the business and thought I just need more time and I need to prioritize. If I could just do XYZ then maybe I’ll actually be happy and able to maintain it all. Then I went to Marfa Texas in April and that was when the realization sunk in and WHAM! I wanted to run away from life. On the flight home I just kept asking myself, who am I trying to please out there? Myself? Social Media? People I don’t know? Ughhhhhh why does life feel like a movie right now? And not the feel good happy one?
Step 2. Identify the missing parts.
What are you missing? Have you lost yourself altogether? Or are you missing pieces and parts? Try using some of the methods listed in part 4 – like writing, dialog, or art – to unearth the truth.
I must admit. When I first felt the waves of loneliness hit I did my best to ignore them. I prayed the opposite of what I was feeling. So let’s just say I kept taking the detour route. I wanted to believe that I could do this. Rightly so. You have to believe in what you’re doing right? Each time I recognized that I was lost I kinda of stayed in that box. I didn’t move on to number two–identifying. And I still haven’t. I just came across this article! So now I’m documenting and journaling my thoughts and I’m quite excited to see what this free writing explores.
Questions for reflection:
- Who am I? Is this who I want to be?
- What am I missing?
- Which parts am I missing?
- What am I longing for?
- What were my dreams as a child, a teen, a young adult?
- What were my passions as a child, a teen, a young adult?
- How do I want my life to look? Today? In 5 years? When I die?
- What are my values?
- What do I cherish most highly?
- What brings me happiness, satisfactions, a sense of accomplishment?
3. Explore How You Got Off Track
There are so many ways you can lose yourself. From the voice of your own inner tyrant to the people and circumstances that touch you constantly throughout the day. Any one of us can easily feel swept away by the countless demands, expectations, and overriding commitments that come to rule one’s life in a seemingly inescapable way.
Minute-by-minute, day-by-day, your true self may simply slip away.
Take some time to explore how you lost your way. Here are some of the most common factors at play:
- an event
- a relationship
- an unfulfilling job
- family members
- strong emotions like worry, anger, fear, desire, obsession, depression
- change and life transitions
- a move to a new place
- an accident
- over-focusing on others
- your blog
- a major project
- childhood experiences
- putting on a happy face
- living a lie
- getting stuck in role
Recognizing what trips you up, helps you to understand your vulnerabilities, where you can grow, and the changes you need to make in order to live congruently.
The purpose of the exercise is not to blame other people or external circumstances. You will never be whole or happy as long as you hang on to a hurt from the past. Even if you can’t forgive in the present moment, forgiveness always begins with the wish to forgive. Make a wish to forgive and set the force in motion. Then continue on your journey back to your true self.
Reclaim your lost self. But often, the process of rediscovering yourself will take time. The lost parts of yourself need to be remembered, reclaimed, embraced, and nourished fully in order to sprout and grow. Practices that utilize the right side of the brain may especially enhance your progress.
The past few months I’ve been really content. I mean, I have my days…where I feel off but nothing major. I think it’s fair to say we will always have those kinds of days pop up. Nothing like I use to feel when I was staying at home wishing for a different life than my own. The first step was to talk to Vu and Jordan and express how I was feeling. I wanted to get back into the work field and actually wake up on a daily routine, dress for work and leave. I just thought something had to change in terms of getting me to be around people. Since working part time I’ve been so happy coming home not stressing over my own photography business. It only took two weeks of working to admit that I could totally walk away from the business and not regret it. I’ve been shopping for myself and buying myself make up and shoes! I can’t express how good it feels to just do something nice for myself instead of investing in my business, crunching every penny. I mean, I bought myself something with my own money! I also got into some Netflix shows including watching an old series, The New Girl. I’ve been writing again, but in my journal. Not so much online and I’d like to get back to that too. I just miss doing little simple things that make me feel ‘normal’ and like a person. Even if it means watching Netflix or buying makeup or journal collecting again. It’s important to take time aside each day to do things that you enjoy that helps you to feel connected with your inner self.
Cheers to rediscovering oneself! Here’s a link to the full article: Always Well Within.