Being yourself vs. being who you want to be

In modern self-help philosophy, one often encounters the advice to just “be yourself” and live your life to the fullest. I don’t have anything against it, because it refers to the idea that you shouldn’t let other people’s expectations and wants stop you from doing what YOU want to do. But it’s becoming used as an excuse to not changing. People don’t want to exercise because “that’s just not who they are”. Meditation isn’t their thing, you know. I don’t want to learn new useful skills, can’t you just let me be who I am?

Well I call bullshit.

There’s an immense difference between who you ARE and who you COULD BE. Who you are is often the very reason why you’re unhappy: because you’re full of shit. If you’re not eating properly, exercising regularly and vigorously, being kind to other people, taking time for yourself to study, read and meditate and progress – guess what my friend: who you are isn’t who you want to be.

In order to become “the strongest version of yourself” (Elliot Hulse), you need to change. You need to grow. You need to stop clinging to the idea that all that’s necessary is that you be yourself. What if your true self is an asshole? What if your true self is a lazy fuck that can’t do three push-ups? Your true self is not a constant in the universe. Your true self is who you choose it to be. Your true self is you, and you decide what you want to be, and what you want to do. You choose your true self.

So don’t go on about in your life not actively choosing to be who you are. Don’t let minutes, hours, days and months pass and stay the same just because “that’s who you are”. If you KNOW there is something important in your life that you need to do, then FUCKING DO IT. You decide who your true self is.


2 thoughts on “Being yourself vs. being who you want to be

  1. I struggle with this loads. I often worry about whether I’m enjoying myself or I just think I am because I have told myself that is something my true self would enjoy. Isn’t changing yourself sometimes a sort of repression of some parts of yourself?

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