Who can complete you, if not yourself?
Some of you may know the movie Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, with John Candy and Steve Martin. OK, it's from 1987 so I hardly think this needs a spoiler alert. There are some hilarious scenes in that film, but the one that comes to my mind today is where Neal Page (Steve Martin) is giving Del Griffith (John Candy) a whole mess of judgement for being annoying - and in the middle of a comedy it's a very painful moment to watch. Now, of course, if you've seen the movie then you know Del has been doing a lot of stuff that would drive most of us nuts and Neal has finally had enough. After Neal has his rant, Del has this moment that just makes me bawl my eyes out. He says:
"I like me. My wife likes me. My customers like me. 'Cause I'm the real article. What you see is what you get."
Here is this perfectly imperfect guy, so absolutely comfortable with who he is. He makes no apologies for who he is. And I love that. I love it because I know it can be a real struggle to recognize our own worth and enjoy who we are. I actually work with people to process change in their lives, to grow their confidence, and even to adjust their communication styles to have better relationships. To be clear, I have to say this makes me think about the differences between loving who we are and being willing to grow ourselves. I know we should have both. The point is to know we aren't perfect, we can always, always, always improve upon ourselves, and still we can appreciate that we have our own unique value to bring to the world.
I can't say I've come to love everything about myself but I know I've put in some hard work to overcome a lot of self-image issues. I know that I can't be for others what I can't be first for myself. I am the real article, because I've lived through some very inauthentic times in my life.
First, be who you are. When you can have a good relationship with yourself, then you will begin to find there is so much more that life has in store for you.