How can we ever really know ourselves? Is it even possibly to fully know ourselves?
Each stage of our lives, we are a different person. Each day of our lives, we are different from the day before. Each minute of our lives, we have changed. Each night in my sleep my cells shed, my body rejuvenates, and I grow a little more. I am ever-changing.
But if we are ever-changing, then how do we keep up? How do we stay in the know with who we are and who we are becoming? How do we get to a place of satisfaction with where we are at right now, in every moment?
Change is Constant
When I can accept that who I am is ever-changing, it makes the “getting to know me” process much easier because I’m no longer trying to “identify” who I am. Instead, I'm just allowing myself to be whoever I need to be and witnessing the evolution along the way. Just because I’m constantly evolving doesn’t mean I have to miss out on who I am in every stage of growth.
I like to think of it as watching a flower grow and participating in the beauty and glory of each stage. And each new development is worthy of getting to know. From seed to sprout to full blossom, a flower goes through many changes and each stage has its own unique characteristics, qualities, and components that work together to create its life form.
Witnessing our own growth is just as beautiful. And we have to trust that we will always get to the next phase.
If I don’t trust myself, then I probably will never allow myself to fully open up and blossom like the beautiful flower that I am. I will never let who I am come through, even if it’s only for myself to witness.
Trust plays a big part in this. When I lean into trust, I find that not only is my growth inevitable, it's the only thing that is constant. And it’s my natural default. I don’t have to do anything to grow and change, it’s already happening. So really, I get to just sit back and enjoy the unfolding of the process.
I Am Nothing. I Am Everything.
I’ve spent most of my twenties trying to “figure out who I am” and what I found is that who I am is nothing. And who I am is everything. All at the same time.
We are nothing but a blimp in the existence of time, yet our existence is everything. In the grand scheme of humanity, one human is so small. Yet to that one human, their life is everything. We are nothing, and we are everything.
Through this half decade long search for “me”, I stripped away all that was “not me” and what I found is that I am simply a soul with a heart beat in a human body.
The more I stripped away (my belongings, my hair, my friends, my family, my job, my conditioned patterns and limited thought processes), the more I found that there is no identity or label that can fully encompass who I am. I am nothing at all.
And yet, I have the entire Universe inside me. I am a being of Love, I am a consciousness that cannot be contained or identified. I am ever-changing and always evolving. The moment I rest in an identity, like “animal lover, free-spirit, stoner, good girl, rebel, writer, humanitarian” is the same moment I know I need to shed that identity entirely. Because there is no “one way” that I am. I am all of it.
And above all, I am free.
The Buddha says, “Not to say I am this - that is freedom.”
My soul is limitless, ever expansive, universally sourced, and knows no bounds. Yet, it is housed inside a physical body, an earthly presence, a raw and vulnerable heart beat.
Letting Go of Identities.
When we let go of identities and become aware of the bigger picture, we can see that the ego is the one that tries to rule our life, gets triggered about everything, and creates identities that we feel stuck in.
And something the ego doesn’t allow us to do is to admit when we don’t know something or when we feel wrong about something.
And it’s pretty important to admit when we simply don’t know.
Maybe you don’t know who you are. Maybe you have no idea what’s inside you. And that’s okay too. It’s even exciting! Because if you choose to know, you’re going to put yourself on an epic and beautiful journey of inner exploration to really find out.
I like to believe that I know who I am. And I know that who I am today may not be who I am in a few years. I know that who I am today is not the same as who I was before my brother died. But right now, in this moment, I know who I am today.
I know that I am a kind, gentle, beautiful human. I know that I fuck up sometimes. And I know that forgiveness is an innate part of me. I know that on the inside, I am made of Love and magic. I know that my life is a gift and my body is my vessel for living out this one epic adventure. I know how I react to rejection and I know when I am self-abandoning. I know what I do when someone compliments me and I know when my body needs to eat meat. I know how I grieve, how I Love, and how I express joy. I know the type of people I enjoy being around and the ones I don’t. I know my soul’s mission in this lifetime is to Love, Grow, and Flow. And I know that every day I get the opportunity to know a little bit more about myself if I stay open, trusting, and listening.
If we hold on to the same belief systems we’ve always had, there is little room for growth or transformation.
The Ego cannot get in the way of true insight and that’s what we need to be listening for in order to learn a little more about ourselves. Insight and wisdom comes when the soul overrides the ego and delivers us a message that feels so true, so light, so beautiful, so fulfilling, and so expansive. When we drop into our heart, we can expand our inner conversation beyond personal thoughts and conditioning and really listen to these life-altering messages our soul is sending us.
We Are Unlimited
The truth is, we are unlimited. And each of our soul’s essence is undeniably beautiful. It is just up to each of us as humans to believe this (and get out of our own damn way) to really see it.
The beauty of being human is that we can literally be anything we want to be. We can become the greatest guitar player in the world or dedicate our lives to researching the fungal growth on oak trees. We can be a surf bum or just a regular bum. We can live in a mansion on a private island or create a beautiful and loving home with under a thousand square feet.
The possibilities are unlimited because we are unlimited. The only thing stopping us from becoming who we are is ourselves.
In my experience, the more you can get on-board with the change that is happening for you, the easier your life will be. Growing will feel exciting and change will feel fun, like sprouting a new leaf. But when you resist who you are and who you are becoming, change feels painful, dreadful, and overwhelming.
How you want to live through each season of life is up to you. Silence your mind, listen to your soul, and know that no matter what, you are already growing.