I recently returned from a holiday in Scotland. I didn’t go there to discover anything, find myself, or focus on something specific. I didn’t go there to read about therapy, or take stock of my life. I went on holiday to have a nice time, relax, go somewhere new, have fun, and enjoy the beautiful scenery. All of which I did.
Something changed. I can’t tell you what specifically. I didn’t have an argument with my partner Jill which made me reflect on my life. I didn’t have an accident. No mystical stranger appeared with life-changing words.
But something shifted.
The result is that I feel more at ease with myself. I am more comfortable with being me. An acceptance.
I allowed myself to discover and to sit with what was happening. I didn’t try to work out how it had happened, or why. I just accepted it.
I made some changes as a result. I changed my business focus and name and went through my website, updating every page. I removed some pages and added others. It reflects where I am and who I am at the moment. I made some physical changes to my workspace and made some decisions about what I will do and what I won’t.
I’m less worried about what people might say or feel about me. Less worried isn’t not worried at all (perhaps concerned or aware would be more accurate choices).
My acceptance is a simple acknowledgement that I struggle with certain things and that I have a certain way of engaging with the world. Through this acceptance, I’ve let go of certain beliefs and now own certain attitudes and behaviours that I haven’t liked – reactions and behaviours I had been trying to get rid of I’ve now chosen to embrace, allowing me to relax a little more.
I’ve spent a lot of time trying to find the ‘real’ me (it’s felt like a full-time job frankly) – the one who perhaps hasn’t been tarnished by the choices I’ve made (tarnished is my choice of word to describe me), who isn’t so aware of and focused on his past and frankly so sensitive to things.
I realised that the ‘real’ me is the man who has been shaped by his choices and events and that my focus on my past and looking for answers is who I am. It’s not a flaw, it’s me. Who I am now. The fact that I dwell on things and play out scenarios is also who I am. It’s not a negative. It can have negative implications but it’s also a useful ability. It serves me as much as it doesn’t. My awareness of it means that I’m able to understand when I’m not using it helpfully.
I don’t know what’s next for me. I don’t know if this is leading to something or somewhere in particular. I just know that this is where I am and who I am right now and I’m alright with that.