Why we shouldn’t cry over missed opportunities.

Our willingness to let go of missed opportunities impacts our capacity to continue taking effective action towards our goals. I recently felt myself crying over spilled milk as I regretted not increasing my activity on this WordPress blog months ago. Forecasting the forgone benefits of my oversight immediately diminished my initial enthusiasm to begin utilizing this site as my primary means of sharing inspirations and content. Though, I was able to redirect my attention to my anticipated vision for this blog, my initial emotional distress was a good reminder that fixating on the past is a significant deterrent to moving forward on our goals.

Forgive yourself.
Being hard on ourselves is generally an automatic reaction to one’s oversight. It can be difficult to forgive ourselves if we believe that we will not be presented with similar opportunities again or encounter another opportunity to redeem ourselves. Yet, being self critical undermines our confidence in ourselves, which then prevents us from trusting our judgment in subsequent occasions. Rather, forgiving ourselves consciously discards our prior limiting and critical perception of our competence. This enables us to acknowledge our potential to make different choices under similar circumstances. More so, forgiving our mishaps conditions our capacity to embrace inner peace and self worth amidst undesirable circumstances, which bolsters our trust and believe in our resolve and resiliency. The next time you regret forgoing a brief opportunity to greet someone you haven’t seen in a while or you get a question wrong on an exam because you second guessed your knowledge, you should immediately forgive yourself. This will actually enable you to trust your ability to take your preferred actions in subsequent instances.

Commit to the next opportunity.
It became easier to overcome my regret of lost productivity once I became fully committed to what I was going to do differently going forward. Instead of feeling deflated about a missed opportunities, identify your next desired outcome and invest your energy into planning your subsequent action steps. I moved past my initial disappointment by brainstorming the layout changes I wanted to make to my page, planning future posts and becoming more knowledgeable about certain features about my site. This restored my excitement and focus on being engaged in the priorities of the present moment. It was a sharp contrast from my prior response to routine oversights, whereby I can recall how the demotivation from mulling over questions that I accidentally got wrong on university exams distracted me effectively studying for upcoming tests. Being fully engaged on the tasks at hand sustains our passion, which is an important aspect of progress. In contrast one may overlook  the next best opportunity to redeem their desired outcome if they don’t focus on available opportunities.  I’ve often been distracted in my social encounters as I scrutinized  what I could have done differently in a previous interaction and missed the opportunity to engage in the very manner that I regretted not doing.

Our ability to utilize any success principle while pursuing our broader goals requires consistently incorporating these ideals into our every day routine interactions. Life is only ever unfolding in the present moment, thus our greatest oversight in life is minimizing the broader implications of our actions during each moment. Practice quickly moving past your slip ups in the every day moments such ignoring a hunch to bring an umbrella when the forecast changes to rain. Doing so conditions your capacity to remain forward thinking during more important occasions in your  life. Many people haven’t yet discovered that the key to realizing their human potential is as simple as becoming more conscious and intentional during their moment to moment interactions and choices.

What maybe keeping you from discovering your higher purpose.

If you are currently searching to discover your soul’s highest expression of purpose and abundance then it may be more useful to identify the broader lifestyle choices that are hindering your capacity to gain your desired clarity. If your laser focus on tapping into your gifts continually comes up empty handed then you may actually be missing the bigger details that primes our mindset for  fulfilling our highest potential. Reflecting upon the times when I wasn’t connected to a deeper sense of life purpose, I can now discern the specific outlook that prevented me from being in alignment with my current passion for self development. Here are a couple universal components of fulfilling purpose that a person should first consider about their current lifestyle to determine if they possess the mindset that compliments  manifesting their highest purpose and abundance.

Are you willing to connect deeply with others?

Service is the crux of living purposefully and it represents our innate human desire to connect with others while sharing our gifts. Service grows from the notion of mutuality  and entails a desire to foster belonging by sharing the best aspect of our being with others unconditionally. Therefore, the best way to assess one’s readiness for a service mindset is to examine their willingness to create belonging and acceptance for others (strangers) in their routine interactions. And the best litmus for our propensity for connection is how one responds to other people’s egos since that is the part of our identity that intrinsically creates separation and estranges others. If a person’s default reaction is to be right, judge others or always insist on having their way then they haven’t yet adopted the desire to connect deeply with others, which is the underlying basis of sharing our gifts in a purposeful way. The desire to connect deeper with others is a key component of fulfilling greater purpose because it requires us to foremost love ourselves unconditionally. It’s through our own self acceptance that we no longer seek validation or worth through others and begin to see the humanity in others. Without having a service mindset, we still perceive that joy stems from what we expect to get from life, rather than what we can offer and share through our inspiration and creativity.

Are you ready to be yourself?

While the notion of “being yourself” is a popular message in our culture, it remains  an ambiguous concept that I did not fully understand until rediscovering my authentic nature this year. Being yourself means to be and embody the qualities that one would expect of others or act as they wish to be treated. What we demand or desire from others represents the subconscious criteria of our sense of similarity and belonging with others. Therefore, our expectations of others actually represent our repressed authentic nature that we seek to experience through others. I believe that pivotal life events left us feeling unloved or unapproved by others as we embraced certain aspects of ourselves and our vulnerability resolved not to showcase our authenticity unconditionally. Denying ourselves the joy that stems from our authentic self leads to seeking those traits in others. Thus, being yourself is not expecting anything from another person in order to feel happy, which is the essence of self love. The self acceptance that results from not needing the approval of others (family, friends, etc.) frees us to fearlessly express our own unique gifts.

The common thread between both of these criteria for fulfilling greater purpose is the willingness to go first in choosing love in our interactions. Purpose is our soul’s highest expression of love that we want to share unconditionally. Therefore without releasing the expectations/limitations on when we express love in our interactions, we will feel separate from others, which creates a subconscious fear of being ourselves or of true service to others.

 

Why letting go of expectations helps you grow.

It is my birthday today and it may have taken thirty six years but this Libran girl finally found her balance in life. Ironically, it came from letting go of all the expectations that I clung to for external stability. During the years when I frantically micro managed all aspects of my life, I would not have imagined my current ability to experience inner peace and joy amidst chaotic, unpredictable and the most challenging circumstances. Detaching my joy from external circumstances or labels enabled me to nurture the emotional qualities that make it easier to encounter  disappointment. This ability to feel worthy and at peace when outcomes do not unfold as expected constantly offers new  wisdom that subsequently enriches my creative potential. So today, my birthday wish for everyone to also discover the love, abundance and purpose that results from abandoning the expectations of who we must be, so that we can grow into our highest self and potential.

Expectations are self depleting.

I now understand that being attached to my prior expectations of validation, perfection and control undermined my conscious awareness of my intrinsic worth. Like many people, I subconsciously believed that I wasn’t as valuable if a desired outcome didn’t manifest, hence there was always an uncharted part of myself that I was fleeing from. For example, if didn’t get the grade I wanted, I first questioned my intelligence instead of simply resigning to apply more effort without criticizing myself. I took for granted that a self defeating dialogue that proceeded my disappointments actually hindered my capacity to sustain the momentum of my goals. In hindsight, the self critical version of myself was not courageous enough to rise to the occasion of thriving amidst challenges. Yet, there I was putting one foot in front the other, constantly reacting to appease every unmet expectation convinced that it was surely leading towards greater abundance and fulfillment. Unfortunately, the only destination that chasing external expectations lead to is internal unworthiness, distress and a repeated cycle of familiar woes.

Breaking the cycle of expectations.

We will never truly arrive at our desired fulfillment and abundance while chasing  validation, perfection control or certainty, etc,.  Pursuing those expectations externally prevents us from cultivating them internally and taking ownership of our happiness and life. Rather, I unknowingly lowered the bar of what it took to feel validated or perfect each time I emerged from my disappointments until I was gradually barricaded within my comfort zone with diminished fulfillment. This is that phase of limbo where many of us feel stuck or stifled in life because our subconscious attachment to our expectations blinds us to greater possibilities for expansion, while our authentic self is eagerly tugging at our soul to be freed. Our truest self is the ability to feel worthy under all circumstances, which requires detaching our happiness from all external expectations that are not within our control. Doing so, subsequently enables us to nurture the emotional qualities (kindness, compassion, patience, trust, etc) that allow us to still love ourselves when life isn’t validating, perfect, certain etc. The ability to feel worthy during undesirable outcomes makes us unafraid of unpredictable outcomes,  thus we remain motivated and inspired during set backs. Letting go of perfection has resulted in being more compassionate with myself, which in turn makes me less fearful of imperfect outcomes. Rather, the commitment to accept ourselves as unconditionally worthy eliminates the notion of failure all together and we simply get to be whatever it takes to grow into the size of our dreams. 

The journey to our authentic self begins by responding to every episode of emotional discontent in a manner that detaches our inner peace and joy from the particular unmet expectation. This is how we gain the wisdom of who we truly are and what we are capable of beyond external influences. 

Why we must keep changing.

Our resistance to our changing circumstances limits our human potential because we are designed to change in order to meet our needs. Every moment in the day, you are not the same person. Physiologically, our body is constantly altering and adjusting according to changing chemical/electrical inputs in order to achieve equilibrium, imagine if your pupils did not dilate in darkness. Emotionally, our innate ability to love enables us to experience joy/peace, where our task is to constantly adapt our self awareness in response to our circumstances and recognize how to love more to sustain happiness. If your circumstances produce a feeling of losing control, resuming inner peace and happiness does not require seeking greater control over external factors or others but becoming more patient. Therefore, we must constantly change within ourselves to experience joy and peace, yet the common response to disappointment is to look externally for what is wrong, what to blame and to change. Naturally, this doesn’t resolve our discontent because it does not enable us to grow into the person that can OVERCOME our difficulties, thus we keep struggling through the same predicaments instead rising above it. Change because it is our nature, we are suppose to change, we are allowed to change and we must change from the inside out to feel the joy that we crave.

“Our purpose is to transform our pain”–I. Anana

*Money, Jobs, Relationship, etc= Service
Service=Value
Value= Energy.

Therefore how we use our energy in each moment ultimately determines the value that we bring to our circumstances, which predicts the  overall magnitude of abundance and fulfillment that we are creating.
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Recently listening to an episode of Lewis Howe’s “School of Greatness” podcast reaffirmed my conviction in the above abundance equation that I brainstormed last week. Lewis promoted his new book “The Mask of Masculinity”, which offers men tools on overcoming repressed emotional pain and trauma and the social consequences that follow. His guest Nick Ortner, creator of the Tapping Solution, teaches how to heal emotional stress and trauma with EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), enabling individuals to make empowered decisions beyond the fight or flight mode of repressed emotional stress. Their projects reinforced the insight that our suffering is simply a repression of our purpose since both men previously suffered the very issues, which they now show others how to alleviate. Howes was sexually abused as a child and initially chose of path of athletics to prove his masculinity. Ortner, an immigrant from Argentina witnessed his parents endure tremendous financial stress and upon experiencing the same in his own life sought out a stress relief solution. Their personal ability to transform their specific pain to joy became the magnitude of value that they offer to others in those conditions. Thus, the inspiration that stems from our own personal transformation is the most valuable mode of creating meaningful change and service.

What determines value?

I believe that the value of any service or item relates to it’s capacity to produce it’s desired outcome, that is how well it serves it’s purpose. The ultimate purpose of everything in life is to create the experience joy or added benefit through the process of work. It takes energy to do work, hence our purpose in life is to ‘positively’ transform our energy/effort (mental, emotional, etc) in each moment in order to experience the desired outcome of joy. There is generally an equal exchange of value and service, whereby one wouldn’t expect to obtain $100 worth of service or product if they only have $5 currency to exchange. Similarly, the magnitude of our willingness to be ‘positively’ transformed in each moment is the value we bring to our interactions. This subsequently predicts the extent of joy and abundance that we derive from life. Consequently, suffering entails receiving minimal fulfillment from our circumstances due to our reduced ability to live out our purpose of being ‘positively‘ transformed in each moment. Suffering is effort (energy) with diminished positive transformation/value, thus it is showing up to life with insufficient transformational currency to afford our desired level of joy.  It’s not simply “what” we are doing that is important but “who” we are as we are doing it that adds inspiration, creativity and value to our efforts. To create more abundance in any aspect of life, we must ‘positively‘ transform our choices to resolve areas of discontent in our lives. The inspiration, creativity and wisdom that we gain from doing so augments the value and service that we can offer to others just as Howes and Ortner and so many others have done through out history.

Your Healing Adds True Value.

I recently considered the difference in my current approach to my long time passion for empowering women to rise above subjugation. Seven years ago, I wrote down a goal of someday opening a resource center for marginalized women and children to overcome access barriers to social and economic opportunities. This was motivated by my own  sense of social disempowerment as a single black mother. Yet, simply focusing on “what” resources to could provide, reflected the limited value and service that I could personally add to my desired outcome at that time. My ongoing spiritual transformation has now broadened my knowledge and inspiration to overcoming the internal sense of unworthiness that perpetuates the cycle of disempowerment. I had to heal my own limiting beliefs and sense of inadequacy in order to understand that it’s a lack of self compassion and acceptance that drives our conditioned outlook of self denial and sabotage. I couldn’t impact this aspect of change when I was still living in personal disempowerment within myself, denying my internal truth to appease the appearances of what society deemed as worthy. I now realize that it wouldn’t be enough to assist a woman on what to do to enhance her living conditions without addressing the internal unworthiness to could still render a person a victim or disempowered in their relationships and personal choices.

True empowerment comes from authentically accepting ourselves as always worthy and good enough regardless of external labels or expectations. My message on this issue now carries a level of authenticity, vulnerability and humanity that I simply could not access prior to transforming my own internal experience of disempowerment. Without undergoing our own healing we simply project our pain as ‘what’ must be done by others to address the issue. Through our own transformation, we gain the value of understanding how to bring about change at a deeper and human level. Our healing allows others to see themselves in our stories and offers the recipe for how they too can transform our shared pain. The only place to transform ourselves is in the present now because that’s the only setting where life unfolds. Stop waiting for the big or special moments because transformation begins during any moment where we are willing to respond to our discontent to create the desired outcome of joy. We must intentionally live each moment with purpose, because the value we bring to our interactions, determines our capacity to reap our desired joy and abundance in our relationships, careers or goals.

The world needs the inspiration and value that your brand of healing will bring. This is currently your highest purpose in life, your capacity to experience greater joy, abundance and connection depends on this transformation. Our internal pain mirrors the suffering that we seek to change in the world. Our transformation becomes the inspiration that enables us to be of valuable service to such causes.

A Dream Of Self Acceptance

I have a dream, that one day you will awake to a renewed hope in your being.
That we will not turn our backs on ourselves in hopes of receiving love from another.
That we will look upon ourselves like our babes and smile at every part of experience.
We will not treat ourselves like an outsider when we fall, stumble or cannot find our way.
We will not play favorites with ourselves, rejoicing in our being only when we can take a bow.
But we will sit and be with ourselves in our darkest hour, in the loneliest thoughts and become deaf to the noise of others’ voices bullying our pain.
We will be like our own loving parent who sees their young running towards them with their scraped knees panting and wailing to tell the tale of their assault,
With open arms, we will hear ourselves out with compassion and without judgment and will disregard what the perpetrator should have or shouldn’t have done.
But choose to let our hearts swell with love for our vulnerability, embrace ourselves nodding to our soul that we are okay.
I have a dream that once we see our ups and downs with the same favor of contentment then the spaces in our heart will never be closed and joy and peace will always find their way in.
And pain and sadness will come and go without being held captive.
I have a dream for all to know this divine smile of peace that now rests in my being and sees no threat in anything beyond my soul.
Join me in the oasis of unconditional bliss that seeks only to fulfill itself.
Because once we embrace the “other” within ourselves, who was undeserving of our love, we’ll no longer estrange the other before our eyes.
I have a dream that we will awake to the truth that the gifts which are hidden in our souls, cannot be found on the surface but only through our healing.
That in healing ourselves, we discover a magic that we wish to spread to those who bear the same wounds.
I have a dream that all will stop dreaming of who they wish to be but accept the glory of their wholeness and with the freedom that ensues will grow into more than they ever imagined.
I have a dream that we will awake to the power of love that lays within, awaiting our return home.

“Recover your innocence, for she is an endless well of wisdom” .–I. Anana

I’ve always had an innate desire to make sense of everything but when I saw life from my ego, I directed my inquiry outward instead of understanding myself. But the answers that guide our personal journey reside with our authentic understanding/alignment with our highest self, therefore deciphering others is like writing the wrong test during an exam. We must know ourselves beyond our ego’s expectations in order to gain the true wisdom for our lives. After years of supposedly knowing it all, it was when I began seeing life through the lens of innocence that I discovered the wisdom and passion laying dormant in my consciousness. In what felt like an ordinary moment earlier this year, during my own sullen experience of misalignment, I briefly mourned the eventual loss of my angel’s innocence pondering the day that she too will shed her innate knowing that she is already enough. The sadness that followed that moment was the catalyst for my spiritual awakening and self rediscovery. I now understand that I was actually being inspired through divine intervention to mourn the loss of my own innocence and to rescue her from the fog of my ego mind.

You must mourn the loss of your innocence and commission a search party for her return. Put out her missing posters and knock on the doors of those who still remember her. Let them tell of how she was bold or gracious, knew what she wanted and went after it without fear. They will remind you that her imagination bore the greatest fantasies, she was full of curiosity, love and zeal. She sprinkled beauty and kindness everywhere she went and lifted the spirits of all those around her. Let them recall how she galloped with pride in her being and spoke her mind freely without doubt. Let your heart be moved by her legacy and weep that she has been buried alive. And as a loving parent who wouldn’t rest until the safe return of their missing child, you must find the courage to recover her. Fight for her in every waking moment of your day, knowing that when you choose to see life though the lens of love, you are one with your true and highest self.

“We are never lost, only disconnected”.–Ini Anana

“We do not need to be saved, only to awaken”–Ini Anana

My divine message a couple weeks ago was  “I AM INFINITE” and my reflections highlight that we lose ourselves by trying to define ourselves. Defining ourselves by external standards simplifies our identity to a binary of meeting our expectation (aka we succeed in being who we “think” we are) or not meeting our expectation and feeling at a loss of ourselves. This creates an internal hierarchy of worthiness within us of either feeling “less than” or being “good enough” Thus we become disconnected from ourselves by having a stronger attachment to chasing the expectations that will make us feel worthy before the judgement of others. We feel lost because of the wild goose chase of hunting for the next external thing that will bolster our worth. Ironically most people interpret this feeling as an indication that something is missing in them or in their life but this is our innate compass alarming us that we are running away from ourselves to our expectations. We figure that if just have a bigger house, loose more weight, have a better job, find a partner that we’ll feel better.

But without healing our attachment to the expectations of who we “think” we are, we cannot love ourselves and there remains infinite ways to feel unworthy even after we get the next best thing. Slight injunctions like impatience with my son or negative feedback were enough to dethrone me from my previous identification with perfection, inciting an internal sense of inadequacy. Detaching our joy from all expectations allows us to accept and forgive ourselves under all circumstances, which expands our self awareness. Subsequently, we feel empowered to make choices that support our growth instead of reacting to feel worthy before other people’s opinions. We cannot be “defined” by any measure, because we cannot own or always possess any “label” in this life. We are simply our ability to love because when we love, we are intentional and transcend all circumstances. Equating ourselves with any expectations places our power outside of ourselves, and there can be no joy in living such a life.

You are courageous and already have all the answers to fulfilling your highest life purpose for abundance if you look within and begin to ponder who you are within all the external distractions

“The Problem is the Solution to Your Evolution”–Ini Anana

Whenever we find ourselves unable to embrace our circumstances or struggles, we must ask ourselves “what am I resisting?” Consider the personal skill or trait you are avoiding or not embodying in your resistance to the situation. Are people taking advantage of you so you can learn to speak up for yourself? Are your interactions with your children or family strained in order to teach you the compassion that you are also lacking towards yourself? Were you humiliated to force you to stop caring about what others think? Your resistance to this particular quality is also essentially fighting/resisting yourself and limits your capacity to be good to yourself. Without developing this aspect of our character, we are choosing to impact/cater to the actions/opinion of others at our expense. If you live the rest of your life without nurturing this all important trait, you’ll never be good to yourself and subsequently will never be happier, more fulfilled or empowered than you are right now.

Expecting others or life to be perfect simply because we lack the courage to be good to ourselves will keep us stuck and living below our potential FOREVER. I’ve been given a new inspiration to develop a self-compassion workshop and would you believe that I’ve been experiencing the very situations that require me to be compassionate to myself instead of worrying about the perceptions of others. In the past however, I would have chosen to be distressed and pondered why life didn’t love me enough to make everything easier and perfect 🤷🏾‍♀️. Rather, I said “how’s this a good thing for my goals”? The reflection revealed that I may have taken the basics of self compassion for granted due to my committed spiritual growth, thus my current experiences is taking me through the “practical” and elementary knowledge to incorporate into my teachings. This approach opened my awareness beyond the immediate predicament, raised my vibration and propelled me into taking aligned actions. When you consider how your challenges are beneficial, it gives you a sense of control over them. Have the courage to ask the questions that will move you forward because your progress can’t occur against your willingness.

You are courageous and powerful, lean into your truth and potential.

Words of Wisdom to My Younger Self: This is What It Took To Become Authentic.

When you finally embrace your authentic self, you end up wishing that you would have begun the search much sooner. The desire to gain validation and my prior addiction to perfection distracted me from seeking my highest self and exploring more of my potential. Therefore, the distance to self rediscovery gets shorter once we begin putting ourselves first and realize that making others proud or happy is not more important than our own well being. While it’s true that everything happens in its own good time and we cannot force personal growth, life only gets shorter with time and we unfortunately spend too much energy trying to find ourselves in the wrong places. Sometimes, we miss growing into our gifts all together because of our subconscious self sabotaging habits. Having the clarity of my hindsight, I have some advice that I would give to my younger self about what it took to grow into the truest version of me. And for anyone else who has dared to ask themselves that million-dollar question of “who am I”, these are my words of wisdom on how to cultivate your most empowered self and authenticity.

Be truthful with yourself. 

I spent my twenties and half my thirties frequently making choices that did not honor the truth within my heart because I wanted approval at all costs. I entered and stayed in relationships that I shouldn’t have, said yes to opportunities that didn’t feel right and outright adopted a demeanor of fibbing to avoid unfavorable reactions or opinions. I assumed that the validation I would gain from the experiences or relationships in question would offset my internal discord. But I was wrong, every single time; living in a lie with myself to appease others has never made me happier in the long run. Rather choices that contradict our truth undermine our own opinion of ourselves, diminishes our self esteem and leads to not trusting our own judgement. The more difficult it is to make a decision that upholds our internal truth then the more esteem and trust that we will gain or lose in ourselves, depending on how we proceed. Living honestly with yourself builds up the confidence and belief in yourself to live your dreams.

Stop waiting.

You are already complete and good enough, so stop waiting for any experience or milestone to determine your happiness. I waited for education, jobs, relationships to feel worthy but until we stop defining ourselves by external expectations, we will waste our whole lives waiting for joy to happen to us. Pursuing our goals from a mindset of inadequacy often leads to playing safe or choosing other people’s version of success. We must already love and accept ourselves unconditionally in order to have the passion and tenacity to pursue our own unique gifts, which may not always be supported or understood by others. The very expectations that you are waiting for either circumstances or others to meet creates your false perception of not already being enough. Self acceptance frees us from the opinions of others, empowering us to follow our hearts and pursue our most authentic desires. Get up and do the things you’re putting off until you lose weight, have more money, have a spouse, a family because nothing completes our happiness if we are not happy now.

Ask for what you want.

The true mark of our independence is the ability to ask for what we want. My naivete associated vocalizing my true intentions as being needy or pushy but when I did not articulate my desires in relationships, friendships or other settings, I became resentful or emotionally dependent. Giving ourselves permission to ask for what we want enables us to take responsibility for our lives, instead of simply expecting others to anticipate our needs. When we do not speak up for what we need, our inherent entitlement diminishes our capacity to nurture a more open and genuine connection with others. You must speak up for what you desire, to receive what you deserve.

Explore your passion.

We begin adulthood determined to make our mark in life but I soon learned that after you leave academia and settle into professional role, life smaller and less fulfilling if you don’t allot energy into a passion or an endeavor for your own enjoyment. Expand your creative horizon if you don’t want to end up like those folks who are not as content in the same careers that they too once pursued with all of their young potential. Exploring our passion heightens our confidence and often expands our personal growth by providing the impetus for us to evolve outside of our comfort zones. When I did not actively engage in my passion for writing and sharing my ideas, I was caught in a limbo of restlessness and boredom. Pursuing our creative interest often requires us to be kind to ourselves, enhancing our self acceptance and sense of wholeness.

Be a champion of others.

We must genuinely celebrate and build others up to personally feel empowered to step out in pursuit of our own dreams. The constant need to be perfect and validated in my younger years led to not fully showing up for others but often meeting them with my judgmental ego. My critique of people’s mistakes or criticism of their imperfect choices contributed to my own reluctance to take risks and put myself out there. When we do not celebrate others, we internalize that it’s not socially safe to be bold and become afraid of also being judged and not supported. We discover our own strengths and bolster our character as we build others up and bring out the best in them. Our genuine encouragement of others diminishes the tendency for comparison, which reinforces our own awareness of also being enough. What we embrace in others becomes a mirror for what we cherish in ourselves and vice versa.

Be more vulnerable.

Without a doubt, vulnerability is the only means to self awareness, growth and experiencing true love. Yet, I avoided it for years because I did not know how to experience the pain of confronting my emotional vulnerability or shame. I would mentally jab at my weaknesses or failures with a ten-yard stick and judge myself through the perceptions of others. Experiencing my difficulties with my mind instead of my heart made me my own worse enemy and I would become less authentic as I tried harder to prove my worth. Now, I delve into my vulnerability heart first, showing myself the self compassion necessary to accept myself as worthy amidst my defeat and disappointment. Our willingness to be vulnerable with ourselves helps us to shed limiting beliefs, make decisions with clarity and become more accepting and connected to others.

Becoming the best version of ourselves is primarily a process of letting go of the conditioned expectations that diminish our authenticity. However, what I had to do more of, was to love. Mindfully choosing kindness and compassion in all my interactions reconnected me to my innate loving nature towards myself.

NI ANANA IS AN ASPIRING LIFE AND SELF DEVELOPMENT COACH IN EDMONTON, AB. LIKE STEEPING JOY ON FACEBOOK  FOR MORE SELF DEVELOPMENT INSIGHTS.