“Until you make peace with who you are, you’ll never be content with what you have.” ~Doris Mortman
There’s a lot of talk out there about improving self-esteem and learning self-love. Of course there is. Those things make us feel better about ourselves, no doubt.
But is that the same thing as being truly and fully at peace with oneself?
The question of self-acceptance comes up for me every so often. Sometimes it seems like a tricky one. Who’s supposed to be accepting who? My egoic self accepting itself? The non-egoic Self accepting the egoic self? — or would that be the non-egoic Self accepting the non-egoic Self?
Silly, really. There’s only one self “happening.” In my moments of greater clarity, I know that it’s not about accepting me, the person, but me, the moment.
By accepting the moment, I’m automatically accepting my self. And then it’s no longer relevant which self. The self that’s creating and the self that’s experiencing are one and the same, after all.
Regardless of how much or little esteem you have for yourself, the true test of being at peace with yourself and with who you are is your level of okay-ness with life and with what you’ve been handed and are handed each moment.
It’s only when we’re living through the lens of ego that we take issue with what’s happening because ego is wired to want only “good” things for itself. If it’s “bad” or unpleasant, ego immediately chalks it up as something that shouldn’t be happening and goes into fight mode with it.
If we can trust that every thing, feeling, person and experience that comes into our life has arrived because we, from the within, set it into motion, we can relax about life.
No matter what’s taking place, life is much easier when we no longer fight and struggle against what’s here. When we trust what’s here, even if it’s not a bed of roses.
Life may not always be what we dreamed or hoped it would be. It may, in fact, be everything we always hoped and prayed it would never be. And yet, if that’s what it is at a given point in time, it’s a valid experience. And it’s what we, at the deepest level, want to experience at that moment.
We’re not just here for the bliss moments. We’re here for the full gamut of experience.
Are you okay with your life and current life circumstances now, just as it is — problems and all? Are you okay with what you have (and what you don’t have)? Or do you feel that you need more, better, different — that something needs to change — before you can feel truly fulfilled?
The “before you can feel truly fulfilled” bit is the kicker here.
There’s nothing wrong with working towards change. Life is designed to change constantly, with or without our help. But “our help” doesn’t always work, at least not at the pace we’d like it to. The problem is when we can’t accept how slowly it’s changing and reject the moment instead of realizing that it’s meant to be as it is for as long as it is.
Making peace with who you are goes beyond self-esteem. It’s not about getting more of what you imagine will fill you, nor about improving yourself to the point that you’re finally able to love yourself. Nor is it even about learning to love the things you previously hated about yourself.
Real peace with who you are comes when you can look at yourself, not like who or what you see, and even be okay with not liking yourself.
Real peace with yourself comes when you can look at your life, as it stands with all its lacks, faults, troubles and imperfections, and not feel instantly compelled to fill, solve, fix and improve it in order to be able to feel happy or love yourself.
Real peace with who you are comes when you can let yourself, and life, be.
True sanity is to know one’s
“identity” as the Ultimate--
the permanent and unchanging Self...
to know that all that happens and
is seen in the apparent world is,
in fact, of the Ultimate
Poem from Notes to Self: Meditations on Being
Just a gal experimenting with what it means to live outside of mind.
Read more about Notes to Self, the "manual" on living beyond mind.