After years of being called a “Drama Queen” and living up to that name, I started to resent it. People were confusing my passion for drama, confusing my excitement for theatrics. I started to realize that people weren’t relating to me because they saw my personality as a negative. My intensity was coming off as a bit manic. Over the years, I found myself dimming my own light to allow others to feel more comfortable around me. I became self-conscious, uncomfortable in my own skin, and embarrassed to be me.
While pregnant with my first son, I started to shrink in the presence of others and become more aware of my ‘spiritedness’; Did I laugh too loud? Did I take up too much of the conversation? Was I attention seeking? My emotions crawled deep inside me, into my thoughts, and instead of allowing them to be expressed outwardly, I held them in to get churned, reexamined, judged over and over again. On the outside I was an emotional flatliner, but I was blistering with self-doubt on the inside.
Stress, anxiety, and depression are caused when we are living to please others.
Lessons I Have Learned from Marcus Aurelius
- Stoicism is a principle belief that one doesn’t react to events but, rather, react to our judgement and our judgements are up to us.
- There are 4 Cardinal virtues in Stoicism; wisdom, courage, temperance, and justice.
- Wisdom= good sense and discretion
- Courage = endurance and confidence
- Temperance = discipline and modesty
- Justice = honesty and equity
- Understand the dichotomy of control- distinguish between the things which can be controlled and things in which we have no control.
- Internalize your goals to create tranquility within yourself.
- Understand that the past has already happened, it can’t be changed.
- Stoics are not passive or unemotional INSTEAD find the wisdom, courage, and discipline to be YOU.
- Stop placating to the status quo or the loudest voice
- Your power, your strength comes from your mindset
Instead of shrinking and trying to please others, I am beginning to learn who I AM. —- slowly. I can see ME in my sons’ eyes and I am starting to understand who that is.