Work pressure, insecurities, money worries, loneliness, low self-esteem, these are all factors that can prevent us from really believing in our own abilities.
If you’re reading this article, it means the time is right to know ways to be the best version of yourself and start developing the best version of yourself.
Enough with putting yourself second, belittling yourself and appearing shy.
Nothing makes you happier than letting your life force flow freely, just being who you are and being authentic.
What exactly is it, being the best version of yourself? How do you get closer step by step and learn to love yourself?
Being yourself: what does that mean?
We are all unique. We have heard this stereotypical phrase at least a hundred times. Just take it seriously.
This life is a path of trial and error, through which we can grow little by little to become the best version of ourselves.
You don’t have to be outgoing, incredibly funny, fashionable or smart if those qualities don’t suit you.
Being authentic means looking for something that can only be found within yourself.
Instead of putting your focus on the outside world to know what the next step is, you better look for that motivation in your own soul.
Think of yourself and stay with yourself.
For example, you want to take that acting course because you feel you want to learn to express yourself better.
A less authentic reason would be because colleagues of yours happen to be taking part and because you are afraid you will miss something.
If acting isn’t your thing, join a Frisbee team, take calligraphy classes, spend time with your friends , or learn how to ride a horse.
As long as it’s something that makes YOUR heart sing. Be yourself!
The legend of Knight Percival and the quest for the golden grail is a beautiful metaphor to explain the joy of true authenticity. Only the brave knights who followed their own path could find the grail.
The golden grail is sometimes interpreted as one’s own personal solar power, untainted by social fears, insecurities and false authorities. Your own golden grail is inside.
It is what makes us unique.
Our own autonomy and self-esteem, which makes us enthusiastic about life.
It is normal that we are made very difficult to be ourselves in certain situations, but that is precisely the challenge of trying again and again.
Stay with yourself
Our true self is what remains when we leave out the labels, judgments and sweet stories that we use as advertisements to the outside world.
As a child it is often necessary to create survival mechanisms so that we can defy the not always beneficial influences of our environment.
Those mechanisms are rooted in our personality, but we still have the ability to change.
To become a better version of yourself, it is necessary to heal wounds from the past and cultivate self-esteem.
We work on our fears , guilt and shame and regain our autonomy so that we and we alone are responsible for our lives.
Being yourself is your natural state of being without those masks and pretensions. It is also anything but the judgments that others make of us.
When you watch little children playing, you notice how free they feel and how little they care what other people think of them.
They exist in their original, true selves. They are still too small to be fully ‘educated’ to the right behavior according to their educators.
They do not yet have to ‘fit’ into that straitjacket of society. They don’t mind at all if they spontaneously start dancing on the sidewalk when they hear a nice tune.
Children stay with themselves, and we can learn a lot from that.
Being yourself in a group
Read Also: 10 Tips For Personal Development
You may find yourself at home in the most eccentric clothes, frolicking with your dogs, drinking tea instead of coffee and being appreciated by your family for who you are.
However, when you end up in a larger group of people, the feeling comes over you that you have to pretend to be different. Do you find it difficult to stand up for yourself? Besides being yourself in a group, it is also very important that you stand up for your own ideologies and do not hide in a corner.
This is on the one hand due to the (irreal) fear of being rejected by the group, and on the other due to possible risks such as losing your job, losing important connections.
Again, we have to decide for ourselves which is more important: show or commit more assertiveness and authenticity.
It is important to be understanding of the situation and not to be too hard on ourselves.
Little by little you will come to appreciate yourself and understand that you would rather get rid of the people who don’t accept you for who you are than rich.
It comes down to this: Are you yourself when you are in a group? If not, what can you do to recognize and change it?
A quote from Nietzsche brings insight:
“The individual has always had to struggle not to be overwhelmed by the group. If you try, you will often be lonely and sometimes scared. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.”
This spell explains that it feels safer to be part of a group, even though we lose aspects of ourselves in the process.
If you do try to go your own way and follow your heart, many members of that group may turn their backs on you.
It can seem scary because we think we’re abnormal when we’re just trying to be ourselves.
However, loving yourself, knowing yourself and being yourself is indispensable to be able to lead a happy life. The risks involved shouldn’t stop you from trying anyway.
Being yourself in a relationship
A fledgling relationship rarely offers the freedom to shamelessly be ourselves. You are in love and want to show yourself from the most beautiful side. However, being yourself means showing all parts of yourself, not just the polished ones.
As the relationship grows, you get to know each other better and the less pleasant sides also seep into the picture.
The relationship lasts and the shame disappears.
Before you know it, you’re having a nice chat with the door open from the toilet with your sweetheart who shaves her armpits in the bathroom.
It may seem like you can be completely yourself with your girlfriend, but on a professional level you are ready for a turnaround.
You decide to give up your prestigious job as a lawyer and go on a world tour.
To what extent can you be yourself in a relationship when it comes to a standstill on your personal freedom?
It’s good that your friend sets her own terms. This is a sign that she remains true to her own feelings and is able to express the fear and insecurities she feels at this sudden turnaround.
She loves you (and maybe the security your current job offers), and she doesn’t want to let you go.
If this career break is really something your soul craves, what could possibly be so important to keep you from doing it?
This relationship can be a test of what you value more: Following your own heart or fitting into someone else’s wishes?
Only you know when you and your partner give each other enough space to be yourself. It’s normal for you or the other person to make decisions at some point that the other person isn’t ready for right away.
Do you try to show understanding in those moments? Are they jeopardizing your relationship?
Is there a balance between give and take and is there respect for the other person’s opinion? Are they at odds with your own authenticity?
The answers to these questions will determine whether the oath of ‘In good days and bad’ applies, or whether it is better to each go his own way.
14 Tips to be the best version of yourself
1: Follow your intuition
If you want to become the best version of yourself, the first step is to stop blindly following orders.
Take back your possession!
“Being yourself is important, because otherwise you will not be happy”.
When you trust and are open to intuitive promptings, you will find that they often contain a great deal of truth.
In our society we are taught that you can only arrive at the truth with logical thought processes.
The more abstract and erratic ways intuition uses to reveal bits of truth are often dismissed as nonsense.
In this way we work against our extrasensory abilities. Following your intuition is listening to your inner voice.
The more often you tune in to that voice, the closer you can get to your own truth.
2: Be aware of your own thoughts
Meditation is becoming more and more popular. Is it a trend, or a key to quieting our confused thoughts and getting to the true essence?
Sometimes our thoughts take the form of many voices: critical, mean, pedantic, and destructive voices.
Perhaps the voice of your strict grandmother or authoritarian stepfather still haunts you to this day.
What thoughts do you cultivate? Are they happy, desperate or sad?
Through meditation or other exercises to become aware of your thoughts, you gain more insight into your thought pattern.
Becoming aware of it is already a huge help to be able to change it.
Do your thoughts belong to you or are they a reflection of the criticism of others? What thoughts would you like to cultivate? You can only be yourself by putting your self first.
3: Give up your need for security
Being safe is something we all benefit from and it allows us to grow our roots deep into the world to emerge as a confident individual.
However, if personal progress is compromised by that attachment to security, then there is excess.
If you want to be authentic and get closer to being the best version of yourself, accept that criticism, challenges, misunderstandings, rejections and failures are possible.
If everything we do is risk-free from the outset, how can we feel like we’ve accomplished something?
Our self-esteem rises just as we take on challenges, and challenges cannot always be one hundred percent certain. Dare to be yourself and take on challenges.
4: Go sports
It is well known that long-term exercise increases your physical energy. So if you feel tired and exhausted, exercise is the (somewhat contradictory) solution here.
By sticking to a routine, we also strengthen our personal will and self-confidence.
By doing sports regularly, your body will not only become healthier and tighter, you will also simply feel better about yourself.
Martial arts are especially recommended if you want to drastically boost your confidence.
Whether it’s Tai-chi, soccer, yoga, ping-pong or running, exercising will boost your life in many ways.
5: Eat healthy
In addition to exercise, nutrition is also crucial in the process of getting closer to yourself. If your body is your vehicle, you want the fuel and your heart the driver to chase dreams, how far will an unhealthy and exhausted vehicle get you?
Love yourself. Take care of your body and nourish it with wholesome, healthy food.
What do you put in your body?
If you do not know what healthy food means, ask a nutritionist such as the Nutrition Center or a dietician. Avoid
- An excess of (white) sugar
- White bread, white pasta and other refined grain products
- Fried foods
- Industrial milk products
- Prepackaged food
- Red meat and processed meat products
- Industrial meat and fish products
- Soft drinks and fruit drinks
- Ice cream, cookies, candy, snacks
- Junk food
6: Read inspiring books
Forget that exciting and interesting TV show tonight and read a book.
In the gigantic range of the library, bookshop or internet you will surely find an inspiring book that will blow your mind. Follow your gut feeling when searching for a topic.
What could inspire you right now down to the tips of your toes?
Books can be a wonderful source of knowledge and can make our world a little bit bigger.
Leaving behind old beliefs and adopting new empowering ideas can be the source of great pleasure.
The path of self-development is explained like no other through stories, experiences, testimonials and tips in the many strong (self-help) books that can be found there.
7: Keep developing yourself
Never think that you have already seen and experienced it all. When you close yourself off to new learning opportunities, you gradually turn into a caricature of yourself.
It’s never too late to learn new things. Loving yourself means constantly developing yourself.
Even if you are sixty years old and it occurs to you that you want to learn to paint, just do it.
Stay with yourself!
Tick to be boxed by your profession, gender, age, or social class. You are more than all those labels!
By developing yourself you not only prove to yourself, but also to others what you are worth.
8: Have fun
When there is fun in your life, you flow better, you feel better about yourself and life seems to be a game.
Pleasure makes the energy flow in your body, so that you are less likely to get stuck with the unpleasant experiences of life.
When did the hours seem to fly by for sheer entertainment? Everyone deserves fun.
Consciously look for activities that you enjoy.
Raising your self-esteem, making your own decisions and letting go of the pressure to do everything perfectly will help you regain your zest for life and spontaneity.
9: Dare to dream
Your dreams are just very typical of you and you alone. Dare to dream them!
The moment you start to believe in your own dreams again, you have struggled free from the yoke of beliefs that come from outside.
There is a solution for everything. Start small, step by step.
As the well-known motivator Og Mandino put it nicely:
“My dreams are worthless, my plans are like dust, my goals are impossible. None of them are of value unless they are followed by action.” Og Mandino
Dust off your dreams and consider doing something about them.
Not sure how you see yourself in 10 years? Not sure how to tackle your dreams? Watch the video below by Ian Hacon in which he explains how you can learn to dream and thus actually achieve your goals:
10: Spend time in nature
We are closer to nature than we think.
The sound of the birds and insects, the greenery, the tranquility, the harmony, all have a positive effect on our body and mind. In nature we can feel free from all worries and complete.
Why do masses of tourists flock to the sea or to the mountains every year? On a beautiful summer day, the city parks fill up. Remember that the things that bring the most happiness are always free.
Try to experience a sunrise or a sunset consciously. A walk in the woods or a campfire can also do wonders to recharge your batteries.
Let nature be a part of your life here on earth again and you will see that the harmony will also recover a bit.
11: Cultivate discipline
The will is a muscle that weakens if we don’t make an effort to cultivate it.
If you fall into the trap of convenience, sooner or later you will also fall prey to procrastination, lethargy, bad habits and a tendency to take poor care of yourself.
These are all qualities that don’t exactly help you invent a better version of yourself.
That is why it is important to make a conscious effort to strengthen our will by cultivating discipline.
For example, we can force ourselves to stop smoking, to exercise more, to stop swearing, to meditate regularly , to do volunteer work.
These are all activities that help cultivate self-discipline. Only with the necessary discipline can you take your life into your own hands and shape it according to your wishes.
12: Surround yourself with positivity
Filter the negative influences from your life and think about yourself.
By loving yourself you develop a radar to feel which people and situations radiate negativity, and which give you strength. Think more often about positive things in life. It is important that you also stay positive during difficult times, no matter how difficult it is.
If you want to protect your authentic self, you better take a step back from that negativity and focus your life on positive and/or successful people.
In the video below, Dr. Alia Crum how a positive mindset can influence our daily lives.
The inspiration and encouraging comments they give you can send you on an upward spiral.
By growing closer and closer to yourself, the superfluous relationships and activities will naturally become apparent.
13: Use your time wisely
Time is relative, as Einstein has shown to everyone’s amazement. Yet it is a wonderful tool for growing as human beings. So don’t waste your time.
Make sure you get enough sleep and allow enough time for your meals, and think carefully about the rest of your time.
Maybe you work too much, or the hours just fly by in front of the television screen.
Are there certain activities that take up your time so much that you have no time left to relax, to develop yourself, to get anything done? Use your time wisely.
14: Avoid drink and drugs
Instead of choosing the path of self-fulfillment, it can be very tempting to opt for the momentary relief and ultimately destructive effect of alcohol and drugs.
All plants and resources can serve as medicine in the right dose and at the necessary time.
For example, a one-time light glut of red wine can have a temporary healing effect if the person was too rigid, ashamed and unhappy.
The danger, however, lies in the inept user who uses these remedies on a regular basis as a substitute for something that actually needs to be solved inside.
How can you be yourself in that way and keep growing?
Drinks and drugs are very toxic to the body and can also rob the person of his sense of responsibility and sense of reality.
How do you bring out the best version in yourself? Let us know below by commenting in the comments.