Photo Credit: Sydney Sims for Unsplash

The Great Pretender.

We are so good at it. Pretending. That we are fine. That everything is ok. That as soon as you get a: promotion, apartment, boyfriend, new job, raise…everything will be better, really. We seem to always be looking outside of ourselves for the solution; the salve to make us feel ourselves again.

There is something inside of us that has been left unattended for awhile now. We feel it’s emptiness and it scares us. It shows up like loneliness or desperation or hopelessness. It wears negativity and irritation like a shield against the world.

If we could only figure out why we are so unfulfilled by life. Even those who seemingly have everything — especially those who seemingly have everything. They did everything right, didn’t they? They went to the right school, got the right degree, landed the right job, married the right person, moved into the right neighborhood, climbed up the ladder of financial success, had children and sent them to the right school. They may not be feeling any level of despair, but being genuinely happy — the kind of happy that shines from within — eludes them.

Seven Signs You May be Lying to Yourself

Here are seven ways that can indicate you are not living your truth:

  1. You deplore Monday mornings so much that most of your Sunday is ruined, too.
  2. You’ve adopted some unhealthy habits that help you cope or make you feel better temporarily (food, alcohol, shopping).
  3. You know in your heart of hearts you took the job just for the money; or are keeping the job just for the money.
  4. You no longer have time for your healthy habits.
  5. You don’t recognize yourself anymore.
  6. You never do the things that once brought you so much joy.
  7. You believe it is too late — or impossible — to change.

Take the First Step.

You are not alone if this entire list resonates with you. I’ve been there, too, my friend. And it is an incredibly depressing place to be. But there is hope. You can take the first step by exploring deeply just one of these statements; the one that really is spot on for you. Give yourself some quiet time on a morning you are not rushed. Go to your favorite place in your environment, and make it special by lighting a candle or playing some soft, wordless music. With your favorite writing instrument, put the statement at the top of your blank sheet, and begin to write everything that you feel about it. Be completely honest with yourself and do not stop writing until you have touched on every emotion that emerges.

Commit to approaching each of the statements in the same way once a week. Save your work, for it is an important piece of your story. The one you haven’t finished writing yet.

Let’s meet here again, shall we? There’s more to come.