Thursday, March 19, 2020

What Does Finding Your 'New You' Even Mean?

Picture Source: Pexels - CC0 License

You’ve likely heard it multiple times by now. It’s not uncommon for fashion advertisements to offer you a new look to help ‘find your style,’ or for the new year cutoff to be a great milestone to once again find your ‘new you.’ But what is your ‘new you’ and what does that phrase even mean?

Surely, even if we do reinvent ourselves, the person doing the reinventing is who we are to begin with? Well, how can we improve ourselves if we’re the person in need of improving, the person who is supposed to bring this all into action? Some people might find a spiritual path, or they may turn over a new leaf, or they may try and completely shed the old in light of the new, but how do you know if now is the right time? Should you conform to artificial milestones agreed upon in society, or could you start that right this second? 

It’s easy to get in knots and a little tangled when thinking your way through this. In the following guide, we hope to explore just what we consider to promote your ‘new you,’ and how this might be felt. We also promise not to use that phrase again from here on out, perhaps for our sanity as much as yours:

Trying Something New

Aristostle once said ‘we are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit.’ While we’re not here to suggest you should be the top of your game at everything you do, keeping your options open and forging new habits can be a fantastic means of discovering yourself again, and always opening your possibilities. For instance, there was once a time where certain things you now take for granted had to be learned. You had to learn to speak English, the language you are reading now. You had to learn to drive. There was a time where all of this wasn’t part of you, but you adopted them, and they became elements that add up to the totality of who you are.

This means that taking the time to improve and open our opportunities can be a great idea. Never feel as if you have to stagnate. Learn to enjoy being at the bottom of the pile and slowly raising the ranks. No matter if you hope to start learning Judo, or taking a night cookery course, or simply wish to hike more, trying something new helps you climb one more mountain of challenge to keep you enthused and able. The more you do this, the more you develop. After all, life isn’t about finding yourself, but creating yourself.

Take Less For Granted

A new outlook on life is not found through continual retail therapy, or through climbing Mount Everest. It’s in changing our attitude in the way that we can. We’re not here to say you should completely get rid of your temper, as all of us get annoyed from time to time. We’re also not saying you should become the kindest person on the face of the planet, as all of us must be self-interested to a degree, even if that broadly defines our self-interest for the health of our family.

It’s best to start simple and to enjoy yourself to that extent. A great place to start is to simply stop taking everything for granted. Perhaps you ate an apple as a mid-morning snack. Did you take the time to really savor that apple, or did you just wolf it down out of convenience? When someone texts you to see how you’re doing, are you upset that they didn’t ask you about the weekend you’ve just had? Or are you grateful that they’re thinking of you? The more you can become grateful for the things we have in life, the more we can count and appreciate our blessings. This can make even a relatively boring daily life compared to the ultimate dreams you have to see rather new, and interesting, and fresh again.

Why not give it a try?

What Limitations Have You Set For Yourself?

It’s also worth considering just what limitations you may have set for yourself. If you find that they’re overbearing, or could do with some adjustment, why not adjust them? Too often we think that we’re limited by the habits we get into, not realizing that we could break them at any time. For instance, perhaps you haven’t felt that glasses look good on you so far in life, so you’ve been sticking with contact lenses. But trying a new design of women's eyeglasses can help you find your style once more, especially with the seasonal shift.

So, confidence issues like this exist, but so do limitations of competence. For instance, if our partner is a better cook than us, we may just allow them to take care of everything as we wash the dishes afterward. But what if you really want to get in the kitchen to learn. Are you really just someone who ‘doesn’t do cooking’? Could you get out of this perceived limitation and find joy in the kitchen? We all have these little limitations that cloud our judgment, and so it can’t hurt to question them from time to time. Consider this permission to see yourself as much larger than you give yourself credit for. After all, no one but yourself can know just how much potential you have to give.

Addressing Your Faults & Reflecting

Reflecting on your past habits can be a hard task. Reflecting in general can seem somewhat artificial. Are we supposed to sit on a chair in the corner of a room and act very somber, thinking of all the mistakes we have made and how it was our fault completely?

Of course not. Many people confuse improving themselves with chastising themselves, and there’s no reason as to why they should think this is natural or healthy. But it can be worthwhile to see what you can improve, and what missteps you have taken and how they could be avoided in future. That’s just good common sense, as it helps you improve your future. For instance, did you let a friend down with your promised regular gym attendance this year? Did it feel bad to do that, and to have them slowly accept your lack of commitment? If so, what did that feel like? The present continually redefines the past, all the time, so there’s no reason why you need let this define you. In fact, the present choices you make now can help you fix your past errors with confidence, and new insight. That way, you justify the past, and heal it. If more people took this approach, they would find that self-improvement is never as hard or out-of-reach as we think it is.

Making Those Important Changes

Starting a new chapter in our life can be helped, well and truly, by living your truth and taking a stance you may not have been able to enact until now. For instance, perhaps the glory days of your friendship with someone seem to be older. You seem to find hanging out with them a chore, or find that they cause more trouble in your life than usual, and this outweighs the good and just how much you invest into it.

Taking the possibility of reassessing your worth and instead focusing on living for you instead could be a valuable use of your time, even if it means streamlining your social circle, or even living for yourself rather than by that which a family member wants for you. Important changes you may wish to make are so vast in scope and possibility, and also highly personal, to the point where we could never recommend a direct course of action in this light. Yet we can recommend you take stock of the hidden thoughts and feelings you may have had, as our gut is rarely wrong. At least thinking on this gives you the insight to move forward with a new goal, a new touch, a new outlook, and that in itself can help you find yourself again.

Balancing Indulgence With Productivity

A little productivity can truly go a long way, especially when hoping to reassert ourselves. Sometimes, we may find that we’re simply not trying hard enough. Don’t feel flawed if you make this assessment, sometimes we can all do with a jolt of energy, or a ‘kick in the bottom’ to get us going.

It might be that you decide to only indulge in your hobbies when all of your daily productive efforts have come to fruition. Maybe you’ll put off that luxury purchase until you have achieved two months of regular attendance at the gym, as this award can be fantastic. The more you try, the more you’ll appreciate this effort and thus the more you’ll become who you wish to be.

With this approach, we hope you can improve yourself with great personal insight, no matter what event or mode of thinking has inspired this new direction.

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