What is Your Essence?
These days, authenticity is a big topic of conversation. Clearly, I’ve bought into it based on the title of this blog 😉
I do think it’s important to be authentic. To speak your truth. To be vulnerable. To be confident. All of these things are what authenticity is about for me. But how do we know if we are being authentic? How do we know what “our truth” really is? These can be tough things to figure out and require a lot of deep work and soul searching, because often throughout our lives that natural spark we had as a child has been overshadowed by rules, structure, and societal pressures.
So how do we bring it back to life?
My personal toolkit involves yoga, meditation, and journaling. Those are my three favourite ways to feel in alignment with my core values and tap into my intuition. They are the tools that help me quiet the noise and listen to my inner guidance, the voice that comes from the heart, not the brain.
These days I seem to always be working on at least one thing that I want to improve in myself. I personally think that self discovery and personal development is the point of life so I don’t plan on that ever changing. There will always be something else to work on and develop.
Currently, I’m in a program called The Reunion: A Soulwork Journey. We started last week and it has already been amazing, I can’t wait to see what comes from the next few weeks. Our first task was to find a picture of ourselves from childhood that captures our essence, and write down a few words about what that essence is.
Most of my pictures from childhood are at my mom’s house in boxes, so I didn’t know if I would be able to find anything, but I have a small photo album in my apartment so I figured I’d at least take a look. Most of the pictures in it are from university, from off my bulletin board or pictures that didn’t make it into my scrapbook. I flipped through and stumbled upon the picture from above. I honestly don’t even know where this picture came from, I don’t remember the moment and I barely even remember having seen the picture before, but I realized it was perfect.
It’s a picture of me (on the right) and my best friend from childhood dancing in the living room. We’re holding hands, smiling, and having fun. It’s beautiful.
The essence I get from it is care-free, happy, fun, connected, confident, energetic, and joyful.
As I grew up, I definitely grew further apart from that essence. I became self-conscious and introverted. I fell into a routine and I stopped dancing. I started to lose that creative side of myself. Not all of these things are bad, I am happy with who I’ve become and what I’ve accomplished so far in life, but this exercise made me aware that there is room for improvement. I have the power to bring this essence back to life through my daily actions. I can put on a fun song in the morning and dance and sing while I get ready for work. I can take a deep breath and let go of things I can’t control. I can relax and not stress about things that really aren’t that big of a deal. I can smile more and choose to connect with people on a deeper level.
Again, I’m not saying I don’t already do those things, but I can choose to be conscious of them and do them MORE. There’s always room for improvement.
Perhaps this will inspire you to explore what your essence is. How do you like to feel? What things make you feel that way? How can you incorporate more of those feelings into your daily activities?
Take a look through childhood photos and see what comes to you. What you find may surprise you, as it did for me. It’s an exploration: be curious, have faith, and have fun.