One of the most challenging things on my journey to being able to be my whole self was reconnecting with myself. I’d completed various personal development courses and classes, read books, followed wise gurus’ and experts’ guidance. I’d avoided really being open to self-connection.

It was uncomfortable. It made me feel shame, guilt and failure. 

Yet, it was the key to clearing away the clutter, the old relics and junk of my past and establishing the foundation of what I wanted in life, work and love. It was where I find the essence of me, long buried under the hopes and expectations of others that I felt so keenly. It is whre the source of my joy lay.

Looking inwards enabled me to finally accept who I am and show myself real compassion and love. That opened the way to self-trust and faith that I’m supported as my true self. I no longer needed to accommodate or conform to please others.

I found greater joy in my days by saying yes to me.

What helped me reconnect with myself?

Externalising what I felt about myself, my decisions and my actions. My harsh judgements. My perceived failures and stupidity. My beliefs about myself and the meanings I’d made from my experiences. My fears of what life could be like if I connected with myself.

I wrote pages every day. I spoke with therapists and coaches. I released long held emotions. I focused on meeting my needs more holistically every day. I forged new friendships with people who were accepting of the me I wanted to be. I drew new boundaries around me and made decisions that aligned with my values. I practised meditation and gratitude to retrain my brain to the joy in my life. I took chances on new solo activities and developed my confidence in my ability to succeed on my terms.

And gradually, it became easier to connect with myself. I became comfortable doing things on my own. The choir of judgemental critics on my shoulders still voiced their words, but the sting was gone and I thanked them for looking out for me, using their insights to better understanding myself. The pressures I put myself under reduced and things began to flow with more ease in all aspects of my life. Over time, I gain clarity and with that, certainty in my intuition, decisions and intentions.

I left behind self-shaming and sabotaging, replacing them with self-worth.

What might help you connect with yourself?

Firstly, replenish your energies. It is likely that you are tired and fatigued from performing as the approved or expected versions of you. Don’t underestimate how depletion can impact our motivation, courage and vitality. Radically replenish. Your eating habits. Your sleep routine. Your uplifting social contacts. Your mental and emotional hygiene. Treat yourself with compassion and kindness. Create time to be with yourself and honour it.

Look at what already positively connects you with your authentic self and do more of it. For me, it was music and joining in – singing (albeit it pretty badly!), moving to my body to it and simply sitting and surrendering to its emotion.

Reviewing what disconnects you is also a necessary step. When we act out of alignment with our needs and values, it takes us away from ourselves. Developing your awareness of these moments and the triggers for them can provide you with insights into what you can explore, reframe or refocus and channel to move forward differently. It helps you answer what do you need to sustain your authenticity – is it learning or others’ insights? Is it someone to facilitate and support you in your journey?

Start small to move forward and be consistent. Journal every day or 5 out of 7 or every other day. Sing in the shower or at your kitchen disco. Run like no one is watching (PS they aren’t). Meditate and surrender to all the feels knowing you are safe. (I like Insight Timer for this)

Listen to your body – what clues is it sharing? Tension in your neck or a sore throat? Tingly fingers or jumpy legs? A sense of lightness and calm? This is another route for our subconscious to give us insights into what we are really experiencing. How do you remedy or enhance those sensations?

Make time for you in your life and commitments. As one role model of mine says “If it’s not scheduled, it’s not happening”. Allocate time and honour it. Value yourself by investing time in your self-connection.

My final thoughts for today: every client I work with touches this theme. They find bringing their attention and intention back to connecting deeply with themselves creates new possibilities. Why? It’s this relationship with ourselves that holds the truth of who we are and potentially holds the blocks to how we become who we want to be.

If you could do one daily practice to connect with yourself and honour your authentic true self, do it. Make it a habit. Start today and take that time to listen and feel within. Trust the wisdom, intuition and feels the joy self-connection brings.