A common topic that comes up is around learning how to accept ourselves just as we are. We are our own worst critic and we know exactly how to cut ourselves down. Further, many of spend a lot of time and energy trying to be someone else.
I’d like to offer an alternative. Learn how to fall in love with yourself just as you are. I’m not talking about narcissism. That’s accepting yourself without any appreciation of how our actions and behaviors land with others. Rather, I’m advocating that we have a good understanding of our self combined with an awareness of how the way in which we behave lands with others.
A great place to begin this journey is to develop a relationship with our archetype. I believe that each of us has such an archetype. For example, mine is my inner beast. I’m very much aware of this part of me and how it can sometimes be overbearing or frightening to others. I’m also aware of how this part of me is responsible for my drive, determination and fierceness.
I spent a lot of time trying to run away from my beast and be someone else. I realized that I’m not very good at being someone else. Rather, I’d like to be the best me I can be! I’m not running away from my beast any longer; at the same time, I try to listen to how this part of me is interpreted by others. The beast is both a source of my strength and a challenge. Awareness of my archetype combined with how that archetype is felt by others has been very helpful for me.
A great exercise to find your archetype is to write a fairy tale of your life. Begin it with, Once Upon a Time…
Be sure to include witches, fairies, beasts, warriors and princes! Your archetype will begin to come to life. As you begin to look at possible archetypes, try them on. See how they feel. Look at their strengths and challenges. You may begin to feel a connection with one of the archetypes. Take a look at this archetype – both the strengths and the challenges. See how your archetype interacts with others and how others feel about your archetype.
I believe that our archetypes are very much alive in all aspects of our life. Look at how your archetype impacts your work, your relationships, your sexuality, your fun and all the varied facets of life. As you begin to see the strengths of yourself, you may begin to accepts the challenges too!