Self-awareness is a gift and a curse. Is it better to not even know there’s a better life out there for you instead of knowing you could do better, but you just aren’t doing it? Who knows. But here’s what I do know.
If you have a high enough level of self-awareness you’re always going to know what your scoreboard looks like — the gap between the way you’re currently living and the way you know you could be living. You know the things you want to do but avoid out of fear. Even if you don’t always consciously know what those limiting beliefs are, you can feel them.
If we’re all being honest with ourselves, and with each other, we can see that the way most of us live is…off. It’s not that we all need to be super rich, in perfect shape, with our dream careers, filled with endless bliss and passion. It’s that we’re collectively nowhere near close to that whatsoever.
The best word I could use to describe most people? Stifled. All that potential and all that energy just gets bottled up and shoved down because the prospect of going through what it takes to release that energy is just psychologically difficult. What can you use to propel yourself to start this difficult process?
Always use angles. Sometimes a certain idea you learn or method you use to talk to yourself can give you the right perspective and make it evident you need to change. It can hit you between the eyes and inspire you. Here’s a new dose.
Any time you want to do something, but don’t do it, you’re being dishonest with yourself. Anytime you avoid something because it’s ‘out of your league’ you rob yourself of the beauty of honest living. When you’re honest with yourself, your unapologetic about what you want and don’t rationalize away your goals.
In my heart of hearts, I knew I wanted to work for myself. I knew I wanted to write. All the time I spent thinking about doing it instead of just doing it made the prospect of doing it that much more difficult. Part of me just wanted to fold and go along the same path as everyone else. I told myself lies about how normal life wasn’t all that bad. But it was BS. I had both meaningful and petty desires. I followed both because it was the honest thing to do.
Think about all of the things you don’t do just because you think they’re ‘out of your league.’ Maybe you want to start a business, switch careers, or achieve any long-term goal that’s worthwhile.
Doing these things causes resistance:
‘Resistance is always lying and always full of shit.’ – Steven Pressfield
If you let resistance win, you’re lying to yourself. You’re telling yourself you’re unworthy of your own cause. Think of what that does to us mentally. Look at what it does to the world. Just like lying to others poisons your soul and makes you stack more lies on top of it, lying to yourself warps your mind,
You get buried underneath a pile of rationalizations until you just end up with a permanently false story about what’s capable for you. No one’s perfect, I let resistance win often, but I get up the next day and at least try to fight.
The point isn’t to defeat resistance all the time, but to be aware of when you’re able to do it and when you hold yourself back. It’s better to hesitate 1,000 times while fully admitting and understanding that you’re hesitating than pretending like you don’t want what you want.
Everyone has a different opinion on self-improvement. Some people hate it. But the truth, my truth at least, is that those w Enter your focus keyword ho don’t pursuit it are just hiding, lying to themselves, and avoiding the most beautiful journey one could go on.
Conquering worldly success is a spiritual journey. It’s easy to say you’re “content” when you don’t think you can achieve more. You’ll learn the most about your spirit from trying to do something difficult. The vast majority of people who claim to be content are lying. Nine times out of ten, people are opting for apathy rather than doing the real inner work and ego destruction of Eastern Philosophy. Meditating in a cave is a cope.
People love to mention Marcus Aurelius and stoicism, but fail to mention the fact that he first conquered most of the known world before he wrote his famous meditations. He gained those insights from the world he conquered. Somewhere inside of you, there’s a spirit of a conqueror, and whether or not you choose to embrace it is up to you.
What’s the point? You learn most about yourself when you ‘face the dragon.’ This is another metaphor and popular story that resonates through time. The beautiful princess is trapped in the castle and you have to save her. But what’s guarding the castle? A fire-breathing dragon. All you have is a sword and a bit of armor. But you have to fight.
Until you face the dragon in your own life you’re always going to have that sense of lack and uneasiness because you know you’re lying to yourself. It’s not about getting the reward itself, but what you have to go through to get there.
It’s not about making money from your business. It’s about having to go through rejection, embarrassment, delayed gratification, and psychological strain to build that business. Achieving a goal that requires delayed gratification, say getting into amazing shape, has less to do with the result and more to do with the fact that you’ve done something most people just don’t do period.
If you’re so altruistic, go make a bunch of money so you can give it away. Go conquer the world so you can share your wisdom. But don’t kid yourself and pretend like you don’t have a dragon to face. You do. You can live your life like a hero or you could live the rest of your life afraid. That’s what this all comes down to. There are few things more spiritually powerful than facing your fears and coming out of the other side victorious.
Our collective dishonesty with ourselves creates toxic environments. People who are honest with themselves about who they are, what they want, and their true role in their circumstances don’t bicker about BS politics, argue online, and spread massive amounts of passive-aggressive energy into the collective consciousness.
That’s where all this madness comes from. We’re all afraid of living honest lives and that repressed and stifled energy manifests itself into much of what you see today — anxiety, apathy, depression, outrage, fearmongering, etc. There is no cure for this. Most people will never be honest with themselves. But you can decide to be honest with yourself and with those around you.
What does this mean? It means being unapologetic about what you want, what you believe, and what you need to do live authentically. At first, living honestly is extremely difficult because you have to brush up against so many fears to do it. Mainly the fear of what other people will think of you. But vulnerability makes you more powerful. Not BS vulnerability where you’re just spilling out your feelings, anxieties, complaints, etc. Real vulnerability means living your life the way you actually want to live it, consequences be damned.
Again, it’s up to you. Are you being honest with yourself? Are you living in an honest way? Where are the areas of your life where you need to be more vulnerable and own up to your true beliefs? What will your life look like if you continue to live at whatever level of honesty you’re living with right now? Do you like what you see?
Honest living equals freedom. No more having to carry the weight of that BS persona you put on to make other people like you. No more tension from having to suppress your real desires and pretend like you’re happy in certain areas of your life when you’re not. Less wondering and daydreaming, more doing. It’s challenging but worthwhile. I’m always writing about it because it’s just as difficult for me to do as it is for you, but we’re all capable. Remember that, and try to live as honest as possible.