I spent a lot of time, as a child, trying to figure out just who I was on the inside and out. Because my religion dictated what I wore day-to-day, my outward self-expression was a bit stifled. It wasn’t until my early 20s that I started to learn my personal style. As far as who I was on the inside, I struggled to understand my spiritual self, and my self-image was largely determined by whoever I spent the most time with.
I know that many young people face the same struggles as I did. The ones who are allowed by the adults in their lives to develop into the unique beings they were meant to be are considered lucky and rare. Though it’s backwards, most adults are still trying to find out who they are and who they want to be, rather than being clear and operating in their purpose for the greater part of their lives. To know yourself serves the world in a much greater capacity than to be lost and confused.
My favorite color is purple. I learned this fact as an adult, after I was married. How does one make it 25 years without knowing her favorite color, you may ask? I spent a lot of my years trying to please other people. I tried to make them like me, accept me, be proud of me, etc. I was such a chameleon. I became the person I thought I should be to impress people.
I was a tomboy, and I felt like I was wrong or broken because of it. I loved wrestling around with the boys, playing basketball, and showing off my muscles. I guess nobody really understood me, and made assumptions based on some of my interests. In an attempt to “act” normal, I copied some of the things my sister did and liked. I said that my favorite color was pink, because I figured it was the most feminine, and I was tired of getting brown and black clothing as gifts.
It took a lot of soul searching and life experiences for me to commit to being true to myself and to being honest to the rest of the world. In addition to learning that my actual favorite color was purple, I learned that I prefer to eat differently from the way I had learned to eat growing up. I learned that I prefer to surround myself with people different from the people that I grew up around. I also learned that I have skills and talents that I was purposed to use to help other people while doing work for God’s kingdom. It is important for you to get to know yourself, down to the most simple details.
What things have you learned about yourself, big or small?