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Be yourself…

Posted Nov 9 2012 by in True North with 0 Comments

Do you own a dog?  Every day I come home from work, regardless of the type of day I had at work, my dog is happy to see me.  

No matter my mood; no matter how preoccupied; no matter how frustrating my day was, there she is – tail wagging.  She loves me for whoever she thinks I am.  I think she knows the meaning of how to “be yourself” – if she could only talk.  We’ll come back to her later; let’s turn to more important things. 

Like Halloween.  What were you for Halloween?  Are you wearing another costume today?  At the office; with your friends; keeping up with your neighbors; your LinkedIn profile; it can be very tempting to portray ourselves as someone we really are not, yes?  Why is it that to “be yourself” is sometimes not good enough for us? 

Well, Halloween trick or treat and costume parties are behind us; the Presidential election too (thank goodness!); Santa Claus is finalizing his trip planner; there are plenty of opportunities to portray “someone else” these days, don’t you think?  We have all been around that someone we feel is not authentic, true?  (Not you or me, of course.)  How do you feel about that person?  Me too. 

I often wonder what it means to “be yourself”.  After all, reality TV shows aren’t real; YouTube videos are staged; Angry Birds is one of the most widely addicting mobile game apps of all time;  (Angry Birds?); and Infomercials are more mercials and less info, don’t you agree?  Fantasy worlds abound. 

Whatever it actually means to “be yourself”, that’s still not good enough.  Many of us continually strive to better ourselves.  Yep – New Years Resolutions are right around the corner. (By the way, I hope you are doing better with your 2012 resolutions than I am!)  Nonetheless, continually striving for self-improvement is constantly on my mind.  (And yes, I will start that diet – next week.)  

To help with my self-searching; “be yourself”; self-improvement journey, my son offered me this sage advice – courtesy of that renowned resource of truthfulness and transparency – Facebook:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was Batman last year; this year, my Halloween costume was that of an American Cowboy.  Truth be told; it was actually only a half-costume.  You see – I’m no cowboy. 

This year I didn’t really take the time to find an actual American Cowboy costume for my wife’s Halloween party.  I simply went out to the garage; pulled the boots, hat, and duster I wear when feeding our horses during inclimate weather – whalla – one (inauthentic) American Cowboy!  

But that was not me; that’s not what it means to “be yourself”.  OK then – Where do we find the true meaning of how to “be yourself”?  Maybe cartoon characters can help.  I mean, the following is the philosophy of Charles Schulz, the creator of the ‘Peanuts’ comic strip:           

”Be Yourself. Everyone Else Is Taken!” 

(Boy, it must be difficult if I’m turning to a comic strip!)  So everyone is telling us to just “be yourself”.  Yet whoever I truly am, I know and I want to be better.  (Based on the annual revenue generated in the self-help industry I don’t think I’m alone.) 

At least we can turn to our favorite, Unknown Sage for advice about who we are and who we would like to become:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lord, help me be the man my dog thinks I am.             

GAP 

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