This post will be a culmination point for much of my Coaching and life pursuits, relationships, career goals…basically, I will share some personal accounts and what steps I took to move forward from situations wrought with suffering.
Recently the loose ends in my life began to haunt me. Turns out, they just wanted to be tied. Now I am consciously tying them because quite frankly, I am tired and want to move on with who I am and be in a better headspace of personal acceptance. To put it to you simply, I am hyper analytical which pushes me to the brink of being unable to enjoy ANYTHING.
This post will be raw, sometimes just the facts, and other times, potentially angering or triggering for me and potential for the same for those glancing their eyes here. The overall goal of this post is to relay this message that you CAN reconcile yourself to the world and you ARE worthy of life.
The next level goal of this post is to share that I am looking for people like me to Coach. I like to have in-depth conversations, face-to-face to work together to uncover the root cause for why barriers continue to come up in EVERY aspect of life and prohibit or prevent one from enjoying one’s life. I have felt this way for 29 years and have been carving out this guide for people just like me for longer than I realized. I am a Thought Leader in my expertise with a 6 year track record of success in helping others like me to attain Clarity leading them to live an experiential life full of enjoyment, self-acceptance and success in building healthy relationships.
Now, to get back to what prompted me to make this post…Personality shaming.
I did not have a personality growing up, or so I thought. When people say someone has personality, I feel unsure of what that means to them, let alone me. For me, I feel I have always had a personality borne from defense mechanisms, barriers…fronts. Ultimately, my personality was an amalgamation of negativity. I have had friends leave me for things I have said, done and for how I carried myself even. I have done the same things toward partners and sometimes co-workers. I have had parents and step-parents claim to know me, or become incensed by my inability to speak their “love language” etc.. The list goes on and on about how I was had “rubbed” people in my life the wrong way.
I thought to myself about three years ago, “I am not a good person.” My persona was that of emotional manipulation…it was not truly who I was. I used to look at myself from an analytical stance and assess situations, calculate circumstances, predict how someone would behave. It was exhausting. I am still recuperating and withdrawing from doing those things which means a complete reprogramming and reboot of my brain with techniques to uncover who I truly am and to enjoy my moment more, as my current love interest likes to say.
Facts I never heard from anyone growing up that would have been useful to know are as follows: people grow apart, emotions are normal, events happen in life best served with a grain of salt, there are no wrong or right answers in life, there is always a choice, spontaneity is part of life, mercy is greater than justice, and failure is subjective. Had I known these things, maybe I wouldn’t have made myself a victim to my personality, or what I thought was my personality. Should have. Would have. Could have. YUCK…
I feel ugly talking about this. I am looking outside at the beautiful clear sky wondering if there is anyone out there that has struggled in the way that I did with similar circumstances as I.
Where do I come from? I come from a father born and raised in America and a mother born and raised in South Korea and transplanted to America. My dad was in the Army when he met my mom. My parents decided to raise their family in America. My brother was born six years after I was. I am 29 years old making me a Milennial. My parents spoiled me, so they say. I was given everything I needed. I have gone through 6 cars. I didn’t work much at all until my parents split in 2007. I got a job in my junior year of high school thinking I could help with expenses. I went to University and graduated with no current debt. Since my parents have since split, they are happier and more calm. I am grateful to them and feel I would not be who I am today, the person loved by many others, if it were not for their hands in raising me. Thank you Mom and Dad. Moving on.
I left for college and that is when the shit storm happened. I just floated around taking classes and listlessly falling into and out of friendships. I had some close connections but started to feel some resistance from others when I wouldn’t react to things, when I had no opinions or feedback, feelings…I was a blank slate. I had no idea there was anything “wrong” with me. I would get yelled at by friends to get mad, or how dare I not show I cared more, wasn’t more loyal…or even in some cases, didn’t put out…for the guys…because I was a “tease.”Some moments I was more playful than others and in many circumstances I was quite reserved and made choices based off of the moment. Was I being shamed for something I could control? What should I do? My personality and disposition was why I did what I did. I cannot force a response. I feel being in the household I was, being mute worked better. Keeping to myself, behaving, shutting up and doing what I was told was the path. Perhaps, I was so submissive that I was not much company intellectually, physically, and even emotionally.
I carried these college experiences with me with more weight than my five year diploma carried and for some time longer. I graduated from college in 2013 and then my mom became sick. I spent the next several years being there for my mom as well as for my parents’ new marriages. I did all these things instinctively and just did it because. I did not give it much thought. I went through years of being bitter and not understanding why. I realized, I hated myself or rather, hated who I wasn’t. All I ever did was do stuff for everyone else, and not for me. A life of servitude left little time for me to develop self-awareness. I do not believe self-awareness was canvassed in my households. I want to be perfectly clear that I do not blame my parents for anything. I love them dearly and would NEVER change them for who they are. I am them and they are me. That doesn’t mean that I never blamed them. What I noticed over the years is that continuing to blame them actually was me victimizing myself. I was embittered and that gave other family members, friends and colleagues as license to treat me as the victim I was creating myself to be. Children of parents still together and divorced parents, children without parents, with guardians, foster parents, extended family members…what difference does it make? Love is everywhere, what you make of it and life is too precious to discriminate against us. So please, I ask you, to leave it in the past and to love us for who we are.
Friends. Family. I pushed them away with my choices. It was not me that pushed them away but things I did, and behaviors. I had really created a vast wedge among me and others. Do not get me wrong, family and friends, co workers, loved being around me. I guess I paid close attention others’ needs were and I did what I could like give a car ride, a cooking lesson, a listening ear or advice on eating healthy and exercising. Between the years of 2013 – 2017 is when I used to befriend as many people as I could. I was on a high giving people what they needed. Only thing was that I was still receiving disparaging remarks from select few friends and family. Some remarks were behind my back, some yelled at me, or left me. Many of the friendships felt empty because I used to calculate everything in my relationships with others, even with my parents and my brother. I started to be conscious of the fact that I enjoyed very little of the relationships. I was so lost..and had never felt so alone. That is when I learned to shame my personality. It felt like I was emotionally cutting myself. Guilt is a very familiar feeling for me. All of this personality shaming really came from some things said to me when I was 16 and 17 years old. I guess from then on, I became jaded and anticipated the worst from others. I didn’t know any better.
My breaking point was probably a year and a half ago when remarks from people at the time were directly superimposing over words from one another and they did not have any relation to one another nor had they met one another: you’re a bitch, you are always depressed and standoffish, and cold. At the time, I cracked. I was tired. I was sick and yes, I was all of the above. Not many people saw that side of me. I wonder if those three people hadn’t said those things simultaneously unbeknownst to them, maybe I would not have snapped out of this life-long streak of personality shaming. They all served as mirrors for me. MY COACHES, if you will. They straight-up called me out as a miserable person and really it was up to me to do something about it. I never gave myself space to accept that maybe, my personality is who I am but it doesn’t limit the possibilities of who I can potentially portray. I wish to be vulnerable, kind, open-hearted, supportive and happy. Reading into peoples’ words, basing a current circumstance off a past one, fortune-telling and coming to rapid conclusions of how things ought to go resulted in things going specific ways not giving myself any leeway to create a personality. It was all about control rather than being in the moment. I was harshly criticized by myself for obstructing my own enjoyment in life. My personality is silly and analytical. I like to think about why things are they way they are and make decisions that are based off of what I believe. Thing is, thinking and being analytical sometimes diminishes the enjoyment potential of the moment. Also, if I struggle to accept my personality in any given moment, truth be told I struggle to enjoy others’ personalities as well.
How can you recognize when personality shaming is happening? Well, if it proceeds over time, it almost can come off as bullying.
For the most part, the people I encountered that handed my ass to me had spot-on intuition. Not everyone is so fortunate. Here, I will provide a guide to determine if personality shaming is ACTUALLY happening or not to you and next steps you can take that can work if you commit and follow-through.
It is important to recognize the three things that move and shake how one’s personality can be interpreted by self and others.
- An outcome
- An action/ choice
- An attitude/ behavior
There are times where we all do, say or behave a certain way out of habit, compulsion or fear and that is not within the confines of our personality. It can be easy to jump to conclusions and believe that someone is out to get us or we can choose to listen. I recently felt personally attacked by feedback from someone on all three of the above related to my Coaching business and marketing necessities and I found that evening that I threw myself into victim mode as a result of me taking their feedback personally. When someone comments on any of the three, I feel some discord. Usually, this is a sign to me that there may be a disconnect from who I think I am and what I am actually giving off. If someone says something to me and I am not gelling with it, I stop and take a deep breath, exhale it through my mouth and ask myself what exactly is the dissonance that is occurring? Next, what do I want to do about it?
Naturally, I believe that everyone I have met in my life has helped me to become who I am today including yesterday’s perceived asshole. I am proud of my personality and every speck of it did come from my experiences and interactions with everyone I have ever crossed paths with. Perhaps, some personality shaming did occur. I know for sure I shamed myself for a very long time. In the event that it was happening, it was up to me to decide how to go about it there on after.
When I was personality shaming myself across all aspects of my life for the past 6 years, I turned to many books to add perspective to what I might be experiencing and in what niches in life I may be ignorant of. The fire list for me is as follows:
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People written by Stephen R Covey
Self-Compassion written by Kristin Neff
Energy Leadership written by Bruce D. Schneider
The Soul of Money written by Lynne Twist
On Death and Dying written by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
The 5 Love Languages, singles edition written by Gary Chapman
How did all of these books save me from my streak of personality shaming? It normalized my life experiences, validated that they happened and got me into action-driven CONSCIOUS change to build the accepting headspace that would get my mental state back by choices.
Note: I do not make any money from the purchases of these books.
What ultimately helps me breathe more lightly after creating this post, the ones preceding it and the ones to come about these same topics on our inner humanity is that with every person I work with, every conversation I have is helping me to normalize my life experiences, to accept them with a grain of salt and enjoying my life.
If you know of someone that is suffering with self-acceptance on deep internal level and you cannot get through to them, please contact me here and be rest assured, they will receive their Clarity when they are ready to hear the truths.