Personal Truth: What does this mean?
I'm grateful that the movement of spirituality, self discovery, and healing has such momentum. Communities around these subjects are in large numbers in big cities and hot spots around the world. While industries have joined in and found a way to monetize and commercialize things, and social media has turned everyone into a sexy shaman online, that is ultimately a sign of how ideas like healing ourselves have become household ideas. That's progress. If we speak to the elders on our planet now and and ask them how much time they spent on self care, and how much time they allotted to movement, tracing their amino acid consumption, cupping, sitting in ceremony to unpack traumas, we'd probably get a blank stare. The generations before us simply didn't have the luxury to self analyze and decide to heal themselves in such abundant ways, with so many modalities.
We're the lucky ones, able to spend some time on our edges and pains, to take care of our bodies with all the scientific information available to guide us, and all of the spiritual and healing tools and ways that we are able to access. With the growing communities and online presence of these movements, there are of course, lots of suggestions of what we're aiming for. One of those that's spoken a lot about, that I too have used as a guiding light for my growth, is living your truth. Authentic self. Personal truth. It wasn't until recently, sitting on a beach in Australia with a dear sister of mine after we finished our sunrise cacao ceremony, that we realized realized the idea of this might not be truly comprehendible to some. The idea of authentic self and living your truth - what does that even mean? If we're living our life - we're doing the things we've chosen to do with our time - aren't we living our truth? How do you know if you're living your truth? How can you peel away from your condition of self in order to know who you really are and what would feel authentic to you?
Well, dear family, that's simply a process that gets better with practice for most of us. I've had something coursing through me for as long as I remember that felt sort of like I was on one little island and very close to my island was everyone else. It wasn't a feeling of loneliness or distance. Just a feeling of being aside. Being apart, even when I was a part of it all. The idea of accessing my personal truth wasn't a hard concept for me and I exercised this throughout my unconventional life. In the beginning it was disorienting as I couldn't fit myself into the norms that school, communities, work places seemed to all exist within. However, the deeper meaning of it came later on in life, when I realized I'd been living the large parts of my life in my own personal truth kind of way. There have been, however, many things I've done or things I've lived that have not been in alignment with my personal truth.
What does that look like, practically, when not living in alignment with your truth? For everyone this will be different. For me, I noticed myself speaking in ways not matching the higher self I was chasing down in my life so as to make those around me feel I reciprocated them in some way. Having a drink of alcohol when I didn't feel up for it, to make sure people were comfortable drinking around me. Having something to share from my heart with someone, but not speaking it so as to not disrupt a flow. Hiding my vegan lifestyle so as not to offend anyone eating near me. Knowing I was hiding myself in a relationship because I was too afraid to be seen.
The more I spent time with myself, contemplating my values, the more I explored self discovery and love, the more I chose to put my truth ahead of anything else. The more I lived out my truth, the more I realized that the world responded to that in a way that felt more real and more fitting.
So, how does one find their way to their authentic life?
Identify the values you hold dear and aspire to.
If this is a practice you're unfamiliar with - who are the people you look up to? What traits and values do they live by? A few examples, from my list, are compassion for everyone especially in the face of challenging personalities, speaking with integrity, eating clean, being mindful of my footprint on the planet, honesty. Figure out the discrepancy between your values and your actions. Where are you not living your values? What areas of your life feel that you're stopping short, hiding, stuffing down, acting differently for others. Find these discrepancy so you can know where the gaps are.
Speak your truth. Or don't speak if it isn't your truth. Don't give yourself away to meet the norms of the situations around you. This will help you shine in your authenticity.
Create ways to reconnect to yourself every day so that the source of your truth feels warm and ignited inside of you. Whether it's a morning ceremony alone, or a meditation, a run or journaling, figure out what makes you feel your most connected and most your 'self' and practice this every day to make sure you're not getting lost in the busy'ness and over stimulation of life's schedule.
Honor yourself, even if it's hard. Pull back from people, work, relationships, activities, habits that are energy vampires or influential to you in negative ways. Create space in your life to allow in source energy, clarity and connection. Practice, practice, practice. I have been working on this for many years and I still find myself falling short here and there. Most people in groups meet at a lower frequency of conversation and action. As a whole, we don't typically reach for mindful, healthy, positive discussions or activities when we gather. We're in a world of distractions, in a world of constant bad news and division amongst us. We must continue to practice holding our truths, living our values, and connecting with ourselves. This practice can never end. But, we can take pride and joy in the exercise of our higher selves daily in the face of life. I wish you the courage to live out your soul's wish and your highest self. I absolutely believe the world needs this of you.