I keep seeing memes, posters, and little notes about embracing who you are everywhere. While I do not advocate hating yourself, finding who you are today unacceptable is healthy. “You get to choose the man you want to be,” I always tell my children. While neither my 8-year-old nor 6-year-old is the man I want them to be today, I feel they will grow into the men I want them to be. Life is a journey, and if we “embrace,” “accept,” or even fully love who we are today, there is no room for growth.
You can and should be proud of your accomplishments, but the desire to improve should never leave you. Learning to be healthier, better controlling your emotions, improving your craft, and becoming a better spouse, parent, or overall person. You can start working on these things daily if you decide they are essential.
Small steps can have a big impact. My advice is to take solace in the person you can become. Work on improving in those areas. This requires little to no money and can potentially change the world. You have work to do if you have your sights set on whom you can or will become. As you work, you can think about how far you have come. This will often provide you with something to be proud of.
Nobody can decide who you should be, so it is entirely up to you. This approach has helped people overcome depression, bad relationships, and even entire families. We can all be better; we must decide whether the effort is worthwhile.
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Dr. Matt Chalmers
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