The other day my boyfriend asked me, “If you could be anyone in the world, who would you choose to be?” I didn’t even hesitate with my answer which was, “ME!” He laughed and looked wide-eyed at me in surprise! Maybe because of my answer or maybe because I answered so quickly. Then he began to clarify, “You could be famous, or be a movie star or someone from history!” “Yeah,” I said, “I know. I’d still want to be me.” It was a short little conversation that didn’t last very long but I’ve been thinking about that question ever since……If YOU could choose to be anyone, who would you be?
It’s an interesting question don’t you think? You could be Marie Curie and be the first woman to win a Nobel Prize! You could be Eleanor Roosevelt and inspire millions! Hell, You could even choose to be Oprah because she has more money than God! Or Jennifer Lopez – Dang she’s gorgeous! Why would you choose to be yourself? Unfamous, not rich, average old ME…
I’ll tell you why I answered the way I did. I KNOW me. I know what my history is. I know what mistakes I have made. I know which people I have hurt and I also know a few people I have helped. I know what my challenges are, what I’m afraid of, what makes me happy, what food I like and which direction I want to go with my life. I’ve worked long and hard to get where I am today and there is no way that I’d want to start all over again being someone else!
And besides, their life might look great from the outside but you can sure as hell bet that they have issues too! Oprah may have more money than God but she openly admits she still struggles with her weight. Eleanor Roosevelt was inspiring but people also made fun of her appearance and her husband had a very good female friend. (wink, wink) And Marie Curie won a Nobel Prize but died from her study of Radioactivity. JLO has an amazing body but she’s a single mom and I bet she feels lonely sometimes.
You know who I admire? I admire women who have the courage to tell it like it is – to be real. To share their struggles and be vulnerable – that takes real courage. Elizabeth Gilbert does it. Brene Brown does it. Even richer than God Oprah does it. Being real and talking about their struggles lets others know that we are not alone. That NO ONE IS PERFECT! That life is hard sometimes and we need to give ourselves a break. That is what inspires me. That is what makes me feel that I belong. That it’s ok to be human, imperfect and working on my crap.
The funny thing is, that most of my crap comes from me! From my own mind. From that loud, obnoxious, bitchy voice in my head that tells me, “You’re too fat. You’ll never make it. He doesn’t love you. You’re all alone.” Confronting that voice, questioning it’s validity and getting it to shut the hell up is an almost constant battle. And since I spend a lot of time with women- teaching them yoga, talking about our lives I know that we ALL struggle with this voice.
Luckily after 47 years on this earth I have learned (for the most part) how to listen to the quieter, kinder more loving voice that says nice things to me like, “It’s going to be ok. You ARE enough just the way you are. It’s ok to be vulnerable, real and share your heart with others. You are NOT alone.” The challenge is to keep listening to this voice over the other. To choose to Love myself instead of falling into Fearful thinking.
So I choose to be me. I choose to be honest and real about my struggles in life. I choose to be brave and keep moving forward towards my goals and things that scare the bejesus out of me. I choose to keep trying to be the best version of me I can be.
Life is hard sometimes. Everyone struggles. There are lots of challenges and lessons to be learned. Try to be kind to yourself. You are not alone. Be Brave. Be Real. Be YOU.