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  1. #1
    Junior Member XV25's Avatar
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    Default What does it mean to "be yourself"

    Serious question. I don't understand what people mean when they say it. I know it is a bit of a cliche question but I have never actually asked for other people's input on it before so give me a break!

    On its face it is pretty simple, act in accordance with your values and desires. I guess? The problem is, I can't think of a situation where you can do anything but do so. I don't see how you can ever be anything but yourself.

    At first I think that means don't do things you don't want to do or seem dissonant with your personality. But, no, that can't be right. I often put myself in situations, usually social, where I am uncomfortable and must adopt new behaviors because aspects of my personality compel me to do so. I put myself in an unfamiliar social situation, like dancing, in order to branch out and be less shite in those situations, which I would call "being true to myself". OR, or, I could stay home and not do those things because I know I will not enjoy it and its not really "me", even though I know its important for my personal development.

    I guess what I am saying is it seems very easy to justify any action as being true to yourself, depending on how you approach it.

    So I'm looking for some perspective. What does in mean to you to "be yourself", and how do you use the concept of being yourself to model your behavior, if at all?
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  2. #2
    Senior Member geedoenfj's Avatar
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    Default What does it mean to "be yourself"

    I can understand that this phrase is over played "be yourself" and can be used in many contexts and different reasons..
    In my personal opinion, it's about not faking an identity or lie about things so you could make certain people like you, but without going against the values and protocols of the society, and also without letting others step on your toes while you keep being nice to them for the courtesy sake, you also got to know where your limitations lies and where others' limitations are..
    But on the others hand, I think faking some good manners or behaviors for purpose of adapting them in the long run is not faking an identity, it's a part of growing up and enhancing your self being..
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  3. #3
    Post Human Post Qlip's Avatar
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    I think the only thing it really can mean is, "Act consistent, which I assume means you are being yourself, but that isn't really my concern."

    Yourself involves such a complex intersection between the world and everything inside your skinbag that a one off comment like that is useless as it sounds like it's intended.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member the state i am in's Avatar
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    however flawed and misdirected you are, you still have to trust yourself and life enough to stay with it. without this self-trust, you can never really respect the power of your own choice, and without that, you can never really respect the responsibility that arises. bc as you pay attention, you learn ways of doing better and using your experience better. and you can also get better at paying attention to others experience, because you are not afraid that their opinion will simply take over yours, but will instead only inform yours.

  5. #5
    I could do things Hard's Avatar
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    I have always regarded people saying "be yourself" to be bad advice. It is misleading.
    MBTI: ExxJ tetramer
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  6. #6
    likes this gromit's Avatar
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    It means don't force it. Don't try to be the opposite of your personality, because it will come across as isincere or trying too hard.
    Your kisses, sweeter than honey. But guess what, so is my money.

  7. #7
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Americans make the distinction between sincere and phoney, and they want to be sincere but are tempted to be phoney, giving rise to the saying in America, when you can fake sincerity in America, you've got it made.

    So Americans want to be good and be their true, sincere selves, but are constantly tempted to be their insincere, phoney false selves for advantage.

  8. #8
    I could do things Hard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mole View Post
    Americans make the distinction between sincere and phoney, and they want to be sincere but are tempted to be phoney, giving rise to the saying in America, when you can fake sincerity in America, you've got it made.

    So Americans want to be good and be their true, sincere selves, but are constantly tempted to be their insincere, phoney false selves for advantage.
    This post would be good if you didn't use the word america as you have. No surprise there though.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Santosha's Avatar
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    I agree, you can not, not be yourself.

    But you can be a self that gets in touch with its own intuitions, feelings, thoughts and desires
    or a self that disallows this intuition and becomes dependent on the external to inform them

    You can express your feelings and thoughts, even against great opposition
    or you can obfuscate them (usually) in an attempt to be safe, liked, or 'free'

    Whatever route one takes, is still an expression of the self.

    Some expressions are just much more enjoyable and rewarding.

    Which can only meaningfully be judged by the experiencer.
    Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun - Watts
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  10. #10
    Unapologetic being Evolving Transparency's Avatar
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    I think you have to experience it to know it.
    "Once the game is over, the Pawn and the King go back into the same box"

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