Self is inward. It is private. Self is your deepest dreams and greatest aspirations. It is your assets, vulnerabilities, body, mind, and spirit. It’s your truth; what you want, who you are and who you want to be.
I don’t think I ever thought about self as its own entity. I’ve thought about self-confidence, the times in my life when I’ve had it and times when I’ve needed it. I’ve thought about words like selfish and selfless, but never about self as separate. Then I began my journey of self-discovery.
A few years ago, as my marriage came to an end and I was going through a difficult divorce, I was forced to evaluate where I was and how I got there. I realized that during the many years I was married, I cared for and catered to everyone in my life while stifling my own needs, wants and desires. While I was living my perfect, pretty, married life I abandoned me. The real me.
This realization was devastating. I didn’t know who I was, what I wanted or even who I wanted to be. Looking back I see that losing myself in that way prompted the change that was absolutely necessary to getting back to my true self. But back then I just felt alone, wounded and raw.
While trying to survive the changes in my life I went through different stages of healing. This journey of self-discovery has been the hardest thing I have ever gone through, but what I found along the way were seven intents that seemed to continually resurface; Love, Strength, Courage, Gratitude, Forgiveness, Trust, and Truth.
Each of these intents really resonated with me. I tried to live by them every day – sometimes I would temporarily master one intent and move on to another and other times I felt stuck, unsure of how to move forward. But I yearned for change and growth and was fully committed to this process. I believed it was my path, and to move forward I had to uncover my truths to rediscover myself.
It was many months before I even began to recognize myself and what I wanted in my life but through it all these seven intents became my rules. The laws I learned to live by.