If you were not self-conscious, how would you feel and what would you do differently?
Being conscious and self-aware is good, but being overly self-conscious, which means that we are not at ease with who we are, and what we do is limiting, inhibiting, and I would even say harmful.
We are meant to express ourselves and be who we are. However, most of us are holding back much of our energy and light.
Children are wonderful because they are naturally free to be. Before they develop their self-consciousness they express themselves and radiate pure joy. They are not embarrassed about being different and unique. They even seem to thrive on being different. Children are often strong and opinionated about what they want to do and want to wear. Some girls insist on dressing like a princess or wear pajamas to pre-school. Boys perhaps want to dress like Spiderman day and night for months and even years. Many know what they want to be when they grow up.
However, as children approach teenage years, they develop self-consciousness, which is suppose to help them function in groups, as they are getting ready to leave the nest and live on their own. Humans depend on belonging to a community – something greater than ourselves. Most often those that belong and function well in groups are stronger than the ones that have difficulties to assimilate.
By being tightly knit to a group however, has a price. We become more concerned about being liked, than about being our true self. After years of adapting, we end up not knowing our own preferences and that which makes us feel exited and alive. We lose ourselves.
The concern about being accepted and belonging seems to hold a grip on many of us until we arrive in middle age – late forties or fifties – when something again changes inside. Our soul wakes up and calls us forth – something inside us feels urgent. We can feel the clock ticking and many of us begin taking our lives and our own preferences more seriously. We long to claim our true being and to express ourselves again like we once did as a children.
“When you are your authentic self, you fulfill the dream that lives in your soul. “ Trudy Symeonakis Vesotsk