I’ve spent my life doing what other people thought was best for me. I thought if I made them happy that I would be a good person. I have been doing this for so long I seem to have forgotten who I am. I feel lonely and cut-off from other people as well as from my true self. How can I begin to find myself again? I don’t even know where to start.
This is more common than we think. As children, if we did what parent’s wanted we felt approval. In school if we did what the teacher wanted we were rewarded, especially if we learned to give the answers they were looking for. If we continue this into adulthood we become like an actor “reading the lines” and playing a part in someone else’s script.
We cannot connect with others unless we are being our authentic true self. Our relationships will be superficial and we will never feel intimately connected to others or even ourselves.
Start by getting to know yourself. Pay attention when there is a difference between what you feel inside and what you are doing or saying out there in the world. Start listening and trusting your inner voice. Talk to your inner child and tell her you will start listening to her now. You will no longer have her do or say things just to please others.
Take the risk of expressing how you honestly feel. Some may not like that and may detach from you. In the end though, you will only have people in your life who accept you and love you for who you truly are.