The challenge of being myself

October 28, 2021

Image of a piece I got from Kai Skye at

During a recent sleepless night I asked myself what it meant to be myself. And whether or not I ever had to pay a price for it.

Have you asked yourself what “being yourself” really means? Do you feel free to be yourself?

Sure, there are things we share about ourselves and things we keep to ourselves. (Today we share a whole lot more than we ever did, thanks to social media. But do we really thank them? That’s another story.)

As a writer, I know lots of people who enjoy alone time. And of course, I know many people who get energy from being with others.

People are expected to be social.  But are you, really? I’m not, although some people assume I am.

What is it you really, really love to do? Do you feel comfortable doing it?

What kind of tradeoffs are you willing to make in how you are with people? Do you hide important parts of who you are?

Why do so many consider being alone so bad?

As I aged and grew more confident in general, being myself was much easier than it was when I was younger. Because I was one of those people who never really fit the mold. And I have always needed way more alone time than most.

I don’t really have a fully formed post today, just asking questions. I’d love to hear your thoughts on them.

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10 comments on “The challenge of being myself
  1. Jane Carroll says:

    This is such a compelling piece… whether it is well formed or not. It’s also something I’ve been pondering for a bit. It seems that in the past when I stepped into myself… someone would step in to ‘put me in my place.’ I think that fact made it easier to spend more and more time alone. It felt safer. Today, I am making great strides in destroying ‘that place.’

  2. Lynda Beth Unkeless says:

    “I have to be alone very often. I’d be quite happy if I spent from Saturday night until Monday morning alone in my apartment. That’s how I refuel.”
    —Audrey Hepburn
    LIFE magazine
    One of the unexpected pleasures and joys of my aging is the ability to be alone and enjoy my own solitude.

    I was not very good at doing this when I was young!

  3. Laurie Stone says:

    I’ve made peace on being an introvert in my later years. Before, I didn’t understand that about myself. I thought something was wrong. Learning who we are is a huge step for self acceptance. Thanks for this reminder.

  4. Robin Herman says:

    The topic here seems to be social expectations. In my 60s I have finally learned to say “no” to events, zoom meetings, phone calls, requests for favors, etc when I really do not want to participate and would rather have the free or alone time. The need to be seen as nice or accommodating has been supplanted in favor of my being happy with how I spend my day instead of quietly resenting the commitments. Now if you have me on the phone, you can be sure it’s because I really want to talk to you.

  5. Diane says:

    I SO love my alone time. Of course, with 27 family members living within 30 seconds of me, alone time is rare.
    I am comfortable with who I am, though. It’s taken a very long time to get here!

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