There are many moments where inspiration comes to me and usually it’s when I turn the lights off and my head hits the pillow. I always think to myself I will remember this in the morning and then when morning comes I am usually thinking about 101 things for that day.
So, tonight I decided to switch the alarm to a later time and forgo the morning gym session to write this blog. I have recently watched some really inspiring Ted talks, have recently had some great friendship talks and some general talking to myself; and all about the “self”.
I often think of myself as the person I have become, but the person I have become is the many “selfs” I have grown up with, and I ask “am I my true self” at this very moment. To simplify, am I being the true honest “me” in every given moment. Am I present to each moment, to people and the situation. If I’m totally honest, the answer is “no”. And that’s not because I am bored or lose interest quickly it is because my mind is so active and constantly distracted by the noise. My definition of “noise” is “work, the internet, music, family, personal life” and so on. My mind is multi-tasking layers that I am finding physically tired and I am not allowing the rest and recuperation that I would allow for my body to go through after a physically intensive day say at the gym or other. Least we not forget that “I” can also be the “ego self”, that negative self that can destroy internal/external processes, that can sometimes be the loudest noise or have the strongest voice depending on how much air time, I will allow it.
I digress, so back to the “self” and the many “selfs” I can be in one day is surprising. A part of my self is a “work” self, conforming to the policies and regulations of my work place practice, the behaviour on display in order to be respected.
My “friendly” self when out and about shopping, asking people how they are before I buy or order something. It’s amazing how people are taken aback by this simple inquiry of interaction. A genuine inquiry of someone else’s “self” and checking in on how they are doing? Just that brief communication allows people to break from the pace of their “work self” and in that moment I glance the real them. For them it’s a moment to ‘be’, to understand someone else recognises the masquerade of enforced customer service; for that split second it’s okay to be human and say “I’m really tired” or “it’s non-stop busy”. And out of this I have received some of the best smiles and customer service because I had a connection and could recognise in them my own “self” experience.
As an actress, I become lots of other “selves”, I connect or identify with these characters as there is something within me that reflects a part of that character. Not so definable or whole but fragments of “me, myself and I”. These range of emotions are a range of myself and how do I contend with these when the role has finished. How do I put to bed that “self” that I have identified with and is awake back to sleep. Sometimes we play parts that we find “challenging”, in order to face that part of ourselves that we try to contain, keep dormant or see where it goes. There is a part of ourselves that we do not necessarily wish to unlock or deal with in our own lives but we can explore on an ‘imaginary’ level so we attempt to put ourselves in this position to see what will happen. Deep down we often know what the outcome would be but secretly we’d like to know if we could handle, cope or fall apart in the “imaginary” world. Only there will it be contained and safe because we can walk away and sometimes we can’t run away from our truth (not saying this is always the case).
And then there is the “partner” self, this often is the area where you end up exposing yourself the most but also questioning yourself the most. It’s the most vulnerable you will be as you learn to trust, open up and discuss parts of you that you don’t even like. But also confidently highlight the parts of yourself that are lovable, sexy, and ultimately can make that person and anyone fall in love with you. This self is is the ultimate high and can be the ultimate low, because our emotions are so connected with each moment, so raw in our true selves and no hold bars. But how do we hang onto ourself in the lows as much as the highs, we can’t, without disconnecting to our “self” and our feelings.
“Me” is my belief in, my identity of who I am, “this is me, take it or leave it”. Is it? If I don’t actually know who “me” is, how will other people? Yes, when they look at “me”, they can make assumptions of my ethnicity, age, sex. And when I open my mouth, they will judge, assess, like or love me for what I say and will form an opinion from my words, beliefs, attitudes and values. But is that the real “me” or another “self” of “me”? There are many sides to me but they are all still me, do I need to know where my ancestors are from to really understand myself? Will people not know the real “me” from growing up with me, spending time with me, or is it me that needs to spend time with me to truly understand who I am. Who I am is formed by my familial ever changing sociological and environmental surroundings. How I see myself has come from friends, marketing and printed material. All of these affect and effect my internal and external “self/selves” and ultimately will decide who I am or who I will allow me to be.
Who am “I”? A question, I will never stop asking myself. Even if I had all the possible answers that life could offer, even if I had my ancestral heritage in front of me; this would still not explain who am I. It would offer me suggestions of where I am from and the journey to now. I and my many “selves” will evolve, adapt, change because they are all a part of me. I am no longer a child who questions the world but an adult who understands more about the context that I live in yet I have much to learn, to discover in the world. I am aware that “I” have to love “me”, every part of me, every cell inside and out and that is part of the journey. But one where I learn more about acceptance rather than dismissal, where I understand the difference between ego and my true voice. One about inner strength and resilience instead of returning to patterns of vulnerability and the past. I will feel and own my true self in situations, and with the people around me or whom I surround myself with. And when I hear my true self I find I am at one with “me, myself and I”; I feel connected to the universe like my whole being is aligned in that moment. And that feeling of enlightenment is awesome, that is the most creative, the most exciting time and the time when I know who “I” am.