To Be Or Not To Be…

woman walking in black dress and dark hair
Picture of Martha Magrina
Martha Magrina

YOU. That is the question.

For a long time, I wouldn’t have been able to tell you whether I was being myself or not.

If you asked me who I was, I would have said I was a more reserved and observant type. Someone who wasn’t really emotional or passionate, and didn’t care to fight (for much of anything). And thought talking was highly overrated.

That was imposter me. The version of me who, when I looked around, learned that being polite, agreeable, and achieving, seemed to be traits that were widely accepted. And by accepted, I mean they were the traits that allowed me to be liked, introduced to, and promoted. All seemingly good things … if that were who I really was.

The thing is, that was never who I really was. I thought I needed to be that person so I could make a good living, have friends, get the jobs I thought I wanted, and to be loved.

The fact is, that it led to many short term friendships, unaligned jobs, and a standard of living that I paid an incredibly high price for. An emotional, physical and mental debt.

The first signs of my imposter syndrome were the pits I would get in my stomach when I would hold back an opinion or idea, because my internal voice would say “that’s dumb, and not what they’re looking for.” Or when I would change my outfit in the morning to make sure I didn’t stand out, and looked like everyone else. That was a great strategy for feeling (and becoming) invisible. Is that what I want to be in this world, and in this job? Visibly invisible?

There were other (more intense) signs that started surfacing. A stiff cocktail of sleeplessness, anxiety, and stress dreams. And then nighttime in to daytime.

I was completely disconnected, lost, and burned out. These feelings of emptiness led to more alcohol, shopping, and other forms of escapism, just to avoid sitting in the depths of despair. But eventually, the universe’s tug got much stronger, and it became abundantly clear, that it was time to make a different choice.

My rock bottom was created by me. Unintentional as it may have been, I owned the path I was on, and the journey that it took me to connect with who I really was.

The good news about being at the bottom, is there is only one way out. UP.

And my ‘up’ was connecting (maybe for the first time ever), with the real me.

Who I am, and what I want to contribute to the world.

As it turns out, I AM a fighter, for those things I believe in, I am emotionally connected and expressive, highly passionate, and energetically outgoing (if that’s even a legitimate term). Who knew!

It seems the talking also came to the surface 🙂

Suffice to say, dreams do come true when we connect with our true selves.

As scary as the messaging can seem, it’s scarier not to listen.

Quote "Sometimes you get the best light from a burning bridge." by Don Henley