I published the previous post because that was a pivotal conversation with my brother. And yet, 4 years later, I still sometimes find myself falling short on imaginary scorecards. So I want to take this post to stand in what I love about myself.
1. I am an emotional human. Although I have felt this as a weakness almost my entire life, I now know that it fuels the immense empathy that I have. I feel "vibes", I "read" rooms and people, and I'm pretty damn accurate. It has helped me excel at work, and make surprising connections with near-strangers. Unfortunately this can also lead me to overthink and read into things that aren't there. It's a balance, but I am grateful.
2. I love and need words. I love finding the perfect word for how I'm feeling, and if someone can't find the word they're looking for, I love helping them. In my romantic relationships I feel most loved when my partner is expressing their love/feelings/appreciation for me through words. But obviously a relationship cannot exist on words alone, so words combined with action make me feel the most safe and secure.
3. I am an observer. I am highly aware of how I spend my energy. I cultivate that energy from solo time, and I spend it wisely. With my empathy and my propensity to go too deep too fast with information about my life, I can quickly become depleted. In middle school Language Arts class I remembered taking a personality quiz where we got "roles" based on how we answered the questions. There were roles that everyone wanted like "Adventurer". A girl at the table told me "I bet you'll be an Observer". And I was, and I resented that because it wasn't the popular option and it rolled off of her tongue with such distaste. But now I realize that I very much am an observer, and it's helped me to be a kind, empathetic human and preserve my energy when needed.
4. I love connection. I know, hot take! But connection and harmony are two of my values. It's always important for me to seek connection in every interaction that I have...and make sure it's genuine. For example, if I'm asking "how are you doing" to anyone I see, I want to remain present and listen to the answer. And if they ask how I'm doing, I try to provide a genuine answer in return before the automatic "Good! You?" comes out. I strive to be present and not distracted. With people close to me I want that comfort of depth and the feeling that I can say anything and be understood and loved (even in spite of what I say). Alternatively, in those relationships I can say nothing at all and feel comfortable. It's as easy as breathing. I love connection so much that I want it to happen quickly, and I get FOMO when I miss out on potential moments of connection. So I need to take a deep breath, realize that connection may not always happen as quickly as I want to (and not with everyone!), and embrace the progression, value and weight of time.
There are more things, but those things are the core things that I've felt insecure about at many points in my life. Always learning, always trying to understand myself a bit better. Thank you for reading, friends.