If no one were watching, what would you do? How would you act?
As we grow, we learn how to comply with social norms to keep safe and gain acceptance, often hiding parts of ourselves to fit in. Sometimes we keep them hidden for so long we forget they even exist - leading to dissatisfaction, sadness, disappointment, and unfulfillment.
Three of my clients recently allowed their fun/silly/wacky/hippie sides to show and explored them a bit.
The part of them that is smart, efficient, organized, hardworking, and hyper-achiever – they knew that person.
But the fun, creative, irreverent, free person was more elusive. They met long ago, but it had been a while, and they had some catching up to do.
Then these lovely human beings played. They stood up in front of their zoom screens and embodied that freer side of themselves. How should they hold their hands? Stand still or wiggle? They tried talking like that person and considered what they would wear, listen to, smell like, say, do. And then they smiled. Their faces lit up as they tried something new - and I was honored.
How about you?
Are you willing to play?
Okay – stand up and close your eyes. Picture yourself at your most powerful - when you accomplish things. Who are you every day to get work done? To take care of your family and your home? Open your eyes and feel your feet on the ground. Notice your muscles, their tightness or flexibility, your heart beating, your breath in your chest, the temperature. What are your hands doing? Feet? Give this identity a name, like Ricky or Beatrice. Now shake it off – dance about – release that energy.
And now, take a step to the left. Close your eyes. Take three deep breaths so that your belly expands. Remember a time when you let go of inhibitions and were having fun. When you had the time to do whatever you wanted to do. Breathe that feeling in and see - what are you wearing? What do you smell? What do you see? Who is with you? Move your body. However, feels best in the moment. Your arms, your feet, your hands, your neck. Put your hand over your heart and the other on your belly. Sink into this part of your being. Who are you now? Do you know this person well? Maybe introduce yourself.
What would you like to do with this feeling, presence, identity?
When did you last meet?
What can you do to remind you of this part of yourself and this feeling? Something to wear. Something to see. Something to smell. Anything that will remind you to try on this part of you. And let it be in charge once in a while.
What would you do?
I met “Sassy/Spicy/Foxy Mary” several times over this last year. She wears t-shirts with Marvel, Star Wars, Supernatural, and Star Trek symbols. She grooves in the kitchen to Shaggy and wears her hair down over her shoulders. She dresses up every holiday with unique socks and gaudy hairbands, and jewelry. And she is fun to be with. I invite her over more and more often – and I am happier when she visits.
I invite you to play. To find your inner fun. To let your freak flag fly. When you show others how to enjoy life, someone feels like they have permission to do it too—what a gift.