What helped you discover a strong sense of self? For me, leaving home was a big time of discovery. Let me know below ⬇️
Everyone goes through a phase of discovering who they are, but this is easier in some environments than others.
Discovering who we are and our values takes time and is an ever-evolving phenomenon. It is even more challenging in a culture with strong ideas about what we ‘should’ value and aspire to, even what we ‘should’ look like.
Then add to this our family of origin, with their expectations, ideas, traditions, values, beliefs and hope for us. It’s a lot!
One of our developmental tasks is to differentiate from our family of origin. This involves reflecting on your values and ways of being to see if they feel congruent with your inner being. If your family have a strong vision of who you ‘should’ become, there will be a period of assessing if this is what YOU want, which could be difficult for you and your family.
I started to differentiate strongly from my family at 12. Our fundamental values were aligned, but some attitudes felt incongruent. I remember suddenly disagreeing with some aspects of their worldview.
It is normal through the teenage years to experiment with different ways of being in the world, to ‘try on’ being the ‘good girl’, the ‘goth’, the ‘rebel’, to see what fits. This is normal and healthy. It helps us discover what intuitively FEELS most aligned with our true self then. We hope to leave this phase with a more robust sense of self.
As adults, we are also constantly rediscovering ourselves, especially as we move through the milestones of marriage and parenting. Taking the time to continually rediscover yourself as the most important person in your life adds juice and authenticity to all your relationships.