Growing Pains and Defining Myself

Growing Pains and Defining Myself

Sometimes I’m not sure I have much to offer people. I question whether I should be helping others when I struggling with parts of my own self care. I have a hard time saying no to people and it’s hard to admit that it has really influenced my life and my identity. But as I am starting to say no and be able to respect myself more I have to call into question my own identity.

Do you ever believe something in your core and realize it that it’s not true. That is what I feel like I am doing. I feel like I have identified myself as reliable, which I very well might be. But In the past the reliable portion included saying yes to everything. Oh you need me to help you on Saturday, cool I’m there. Oh you need me to help pay for your electric bill, sure I can help. But slowly and surely it is draining my time and account and it does not feel good. It feels like everyone expects me to say yes all the time. And when I say no I feel guilty, like I’m not a reliable person now.

I’m not quite sure I associate reliability with saying yes to everything. I’m sure a psychiatrist would tell me something profound but for now I decided to look up the definition instead.

re·li·a·ble/rəˈlīəb(ə)l/Learn to pronounce adjective

  1. 1.consistently good in quality or performance; able to be trusted.”a reliable source of information”synonyms:dependable, good, well founded, well grounded, authentic, definitive, attested, valid, genuine, from the horse’s mouth, sound, true; More

noun

  1. 1.a person or thing with trustworthy qualities.”the supporting cast includes old reliables like Mitchell”

After reading the definition I am forced to realize my definition was wrong. It is fascinating to me that we each have our own definition of what a word means and we give far more meaning to the word than it deserves. Because at the end of the day I am a person. I can’t truly be defined and questioning my definition of myself opens up the possibility for change and self awareness. I’m realizing that my personal definition was more routed with perfectionism. Being a perfect friend, perfect daughter, perfect sibling and not about reliability. And I know I put my self worth into the idea of being perfect, but service is only service when it is offered knowing and willingly. And serving starts with ourselves. How can I best serve me? How can I best support myself before supporting others?

So that is what I am doing now. Trying to put every idea of a definition I have of myself and calling into question.

  • What is my definition of my trait?
  • What is the real definition?
  • Is this helping me or hurting me?
  • How is this not working for me?
  • Is it nice?
  • Is it honest?
  • Is there a better or broader word to define it?

I keep coming back to what I feel my true self is. And I am realizing it is incredibly broad, it is constantly changing, and at the end of the day I am here for growth. I am here to grow and learn and love. This journey I am on is eye opening and I look forward to reflecting on this post 6 months, 1 year, 5 years, and so on to see how very wrong I was even now. And that is beautiful because being wrong means I am growing.

So here is to change and redefining myself to be human instead of using small words.

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