The path to depression is not the same for everyone. It’s not right to think that only very painful situations result in depression. Not being allowed or not having the courage to be oneself can cause depression. There is who people expect or want you to be and who you really are. This is an unhappy state for anyone to be in but you can change the narrative.
Oscar Wilde said it right when he said: “Be yourself, everyone else is taken.” Because if you know how expensive it is to be someone else, you’d realize it pays to be you.
Even though the quote has been backed up with statements that really mean ‘be who I want you to be’, ‘be who I think you should be’ or ‘be who I expect you to be’. But what does it then mean to be true to one’s self and how can it be possible?
If a person is mean to people around them, is it alright for them in being themselves to keep being mean? Is that their true nature or some other nature imposing itself on them?
You need to discover who you are before you can be yourself. It’s difficult being oneself because many people suffer from an identity crisis as I said earlier. So many societal portals inviting you to accept their identity as it is way “cooler” to be associated with them. That’s how youngsters get lured into joining cult groups and sorts.
Sincerely, it’s not good for your mental health because you have to hide your true nature. Trying to be who you’re not is quite bad for your mental health as you’d be plagued with thoughts on what to do per time leading to worrisome thinking than to depression.
How to know who you are and be Yourself?
1. Close the door to everything you have known about yourself.
I call it the “process of unlearning” where you unlearn whatever it is you’ve told yourself or have been told that you are. You’re not those things anymore.
2. Become conscious of the decisions you take.
Especially the ones you made without thinking too much. I believe this is where major truths about you are discovered. For instance, you bought some groceries at the store and realized you were given extra change.
The decision you make at that point says a lot about you and also learn to make those choices on your own. Seeking advice is good sometimes but on this journey, you should learn to make them on your own.
3. Everyone has thoughts and everyone imagines, try thinking about what kinds of things you would or wouldn’t like to do, and act accordingly. Try taking personality tests but be careful to pick out what you want and not let it define you.
4. Shut the Voices Out
What would they say or think of me? What if I fail and they ridicule me? If you want to be true to yourself, you need to learn to shut them out and take the leap to become who you really want to be. Shut them out by taking deep breaths while you focus your mind on the positive things. If you do or don’t do, they’ll still comment, criticize or ridicule so why not just be happy all the same and be you. You’d be glad you did. Don’t be afraid of doing what resonates with you.
5. You are not your past
An amazing thing about being yourself is that it can change at any moment. Hence, it’s quite unhealthy for you to be defined in the now of who you once were or what you once did. Don’t allow yourself to be the person you never liked. It happened and you weren’t proud of yourself. They have happened and are in the past it is not happening anymore. So stop hating yourself and holding on to what was once, forgive yourself, accept it, learn, grow, and become a new person.
6. I strongly advise to be calm and don’t put too much pressure on yourself by being worried whether your new self would slip back into the old. Being yourself is risky, some days might not look like what you expect to see and other days might seem like you’ve arrived.
Either way, realize that in the long run what matters most is your happiness and that you’re capable of being a good person. Not living in regrets of what you could’ve done.