Are You Being True to Yourself?
Winter is the perfect time of year to tune in to yourself and check whether you – and your life – are in alignment with who you truly are, what you truly want to be doing and where you want to be heading. For many of my clients, asking those questions was a wake up call. A sudden realisation that they had no idea where they were heading – or why.
And it runs deeper than that.
Right to the core of who you are.
An uncomfortable realisation that you don’t really recognise yourself anymore…
When you strip away the titles, the labels, the roles you take on, the material possessions… who are you?
It can be terrifying to realise that you simply don’t know.
I know, because I’ve been there myself…
If this resonates more than you’d care to admit, watch this video. In it, I talk about the importance of being yourself and why it’s something that so many doctors, lawyers and other high-achievers struggle with…
You will only be able to be your happiest self if you are BEING yourself…
It’s time to give yourself permission to reclaim your mind, body and soul and allow the world to see the real you… and the first step really is that – giving yourself permission…
— Hello, my lovely. It’s Dr Sally Graddon, The Life Balance Doctor here.
It’s been a really long time since I last hopped online. And I’m sorry for that. But, there’s been lots going on behind the scenes here!
I just wanted to come and talk to you today about the importance of being yourself, of being your true self. And, rather than projecting the image that you think the world wants to see from you, being just you. Just you. And nobody else.
For a lot of the doctors that I work with and a lot of my clients it’s something they find really, really hard because often from a very young age they have tried to live up to other people’s expectations, or what they think are other people’s expectations. And the reason why they do that is varied but it tends very often to come back to wanting to please people. Wanting to please their parents. Wanting to please their teachers or the people around them, the adults around them they look up to, that they respect, that they admire.
For so many of them medicine and becoming a doctor, or becoming a lawyer, or whatever else it is in their lives that they have achieved has been a way to get approval. Even if it didn’t start out that way it has in many cases turned out to be something which is important to them to get approval from other people for. And the reason why so many doctors, lawyers and other high achievers struggle with this, comes back to that wanting to please people, wanting to prove yourself, wanting to prove that you can do it, to prove that you can succeed, to prove that you can make it through the training and become whatever it is you set out to do.
That fear of failure that so many of us who have trained as doctors and worked in that world feel or have felt is crushing at times. It can be completely destroying. It can destroy your self-confidence, your self-worth and make you feel as if you’re not enough. And it’s something that you need to be really, really aware of. And as I say, so many of the doctors I work with this is something they really, really struggle with.
But, what I always say is that if your outer success isn’t matched by an inner glow of joy, of fulfilment, then the reality is that you are not being yourself. That you are not being true to yourself. And along the way it’s very easy to get sidetracked, to feel as though you have to behave in a certain way, present yourself in a certain way, to speak in a certain way, to hang around with certain people, to present this together image of yourself in order to be accepted, in order to fit in, in order to succeed, in order to please your parents, in order to get the jobs that you want.
But the reality is if you’re not being yourself at the core of all of that, then it’s, well, it’s impossible to be happy. Truly, truly happy. You may have the material wealth. You may have the nice car, the nice house. You may have the seemingly perfect relationship to everybody on the outside. You may have beautiful children that you adore. You may have a job that on paper is incredible. You may travel around the world and do all these wonderful things that yes, they’re great. But if deep down you are not being yourself, if you are hiding parts of yourself, if you feel it’s not safe in some way to be you, to express yourself as you, if you feel you’re too big or too loud or too quiet or too reserved really and then put on a front to the world to damp that down or hide it, then the reality is you’re not really living.
You’re not living. You’re existing.
And it’s the root cause of most of the unhappiness that I see in my clients. It was the root cause of my own unhappiness, and this is something that I struggled with for many, many years. If truth be told, it’s something that I still have to actively work on day in, day out, because it’s so easy to slip back into 20-30+ years of conditioning, of trying to fit into that box, of trying to be liked, of trying to find approval.
The truth is that the only approval you need is your own. It’s within you. And at some point if you truly want to be happy you need to give yourself permission to be happy. You need to give yourself permission to be you.
Whatever that looks like.
Whoever you really are.
Because, you know, that person, you, is truly beautiful. I don’t mean externally. I mean the inside. That glow that you give out to the world. The way you make other people feel.
Not everybody is going to be happy about it. Not everybody is necessarily going to accept you for who you are. But I made the mistake for many, many years of trying to go through life being liked by everybody. It felt like the worst thing in the world if somebody didn’t like me. But as part of that – or because of it – I wasn’t being me. And I was miserable.
Nobody in this world is liked by everybody. They just aren’t. Even the most incredible leaders that most of us would look up to, people that many people revere. There are always going to be some people who despise them or who just dislike them for no other reason than they don’t like their hairstyle, or they disagree with their politics, or whatever. But it’s not your job to make everybody like you.
It’s your job to be true to yourself.
It’s your job to like yourself.
And you’ll learn you really like yourself when you give yourself permission to be yourself. And when you do that everything else starts to fall into place. You suddenly realise what it is that you’re meant to be doing with your life. What it is, what contribution you’re meant to make to this world. And your best contribution, your highest contribution, the most incredible contribution that you can make is being yourself because that, when you’re in that space, that is when the magic happens. When you allow your true gifts to shine. When you finally allow them out of that box to be you.
The world needs you and your gifts, but if you’re hiding them because you don’t think that they’re okay or because you think they’re too much or too small, then the entire world will miss out on that. And the world doesn’t deserve that, quite honestly.
So, be yourself. Be true to yourself. And give yourself permission to be free, to be yourself.
I can guarantee that when you allow yourself to and get through the initial settling period, because this is hard work – don’t get me wrong, it’s hard to release that conditioning. But once you get through that initial period, oh, you will just fly and be so much happier. I guarantee it.
So my lovely, take care of yourself. Go and be YOU, because nobody else can be you and nobody, nobody can be you.
You’re the only you. So, go and be you!
Take care my lovely and I will speak to you very, very soon.
Dr Sally Graddon
The Life Balance Doctor
I help doctors to find balance, reconnect with the things that are truly important to them and create a life that makes them light up as they Dare to Dream of a life outside of medicine!
As a former doctor and now mother of three, I know only too well the challenges of trying to balance career and family life, and I feel incredibly privileged to help others create a life they love, as I have done myself.
Send me a message to find out more about working with me. I look forward to 'meeting' you!
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