For many years, I was a lone ranger, doing
things on my own, resistant of others' help
and support. Although friendly and well-liked,
I never let anyone get too close. I never felt
good about sharing my deepest thoughts and feelings,
perhaps for fear of ridicule. Somehow, during
my teenage years, I nurtured the belief that
I had to be careful not to share too much, that
it wasn't okay to be myself (perhaps I wasn't
sure how to be comfortable at being me?). I
felt very alone and just thought that this was
how life was to be for me.
Now, looking back, I can see how I became this
way. I can look back at those late teen years,
the things that occurred, and see how this belief
formed. Sometimes it's not so easy to discover
how our beliefs are formed. And that's not really
what's important. It's easy to get hung up on
the "why" and the "how did get
here?" But it's an intellectual exercise
that will never help you change your beliefs.
What is important is that I became aware of
this belief and how it was limiting my life.
And I chose to adopt a new belief.
Keeping People Out
It's not smart to be a lone ranger - it's
safe. By choosing to be alone, you keep people
out. The attitude emanating from you is, "stay
away, I want to be alone," although, that
may not be your conscious intention. This is
actually very selfish. Because of your unwillingness
to let anyone love you, you keep yourself and
your special gifts and talents to yourself.
Possibly you are not quite sure how to be comfortable
being you. It's not like they hand you a 'how-to-be-yourself
handbook' when you finish high school. (If you
received one, please share it with the rest
All it takes is for someone to break through
your barrier, or for you to realize that you
don't need to do everything yourself and that
we are social beings meant to connect and to
share in love. You don't need to hide behind
an illusion that you are separate and alone.
You are not alone. Stop hiding the best part
of who you are! Your greatness lies in being
able to share yourself with others.
Keeping Ourselves Out
Too often we live either as lone rangers, separate
and disconnected from others, or we attempt
to give all we have to others with no sense
of self-regard. We can be so invested in giving
to others or caretaking that we often give to
our own detriment. We burn out, develop compassion
fatigue, or become physically drained causing
sickness, stress and unhappiness to ourselves
and those around us.
Learning to love yourself is an important part
of maturity. Learning to know yourself well,
accept who you are and then learning to make
wise decisions deriving from a genuine self-respect
if fundamental to spiritual, psychological and
If you disregard you personal needs, you'll
harm yourself. You will also be unable to serve
others and the world around you because you
will become resentful. Resentfulness is a form
of anger - at self - and it is energy draining.
You may think that you are angry because others
are taking advantage but the reality is that
no one gets to take advantage of you without
Some people think they are helping others by
doing everything for them, but the impact is
that people do not learn to accept responsibility
for them selves. It is imperative that you learn
to care for your body, nurture your soul, save
for your retirement, and eliminate the negative
energy drains in your life.
I've learned that when I share myself with
others and allow myself to open up and discuss
my thoughts, feelings, fears, and doubts, others
can relate to me on a much deeper level. We
have so much more in common than we realize.
As much as we're all the same, we're each unique.
This is the human paradox. What you feel, I
feel. The life lessons that I must learn, you
will learn too. And yet there's something that
makes each of us unique and it's at this place
where we discover the differences we each have.
It's what makes people fascinating!
What we have in common, we share; we learn
from each other new perspectives so that life
becomes easier and more enjoyable. And what
we see as unique and distinct in each other,
we can help nurture in others. Our talents are
those things that come so easily that we don't
realize just how special they are until someone
tells us. This is where accepting a compliment
is so important. You may brush it off as unimportant
because you don't realize the significance.
But you need to hear what others have to share
with you about you. Everyone needs encouragement,
Most people are willing to give and provide
support. They want to know that they are not
alone. That's why people read - to know they're
not alone. People want to make a difference;
they want to feel included; they want the opportunity
to get to know you - your thoughts, ideas, feelings,
fears, and doubts - and they want to share their
own. Let them in by sharing your heart with
others with whom you feel comfortable and safe.
Take a chance. You'll find that it doesn't make
you vulnerable to open up; it's strength. It's
also extremely liberating when you don't have
to hold back on being you.
Julie Fuimano, MBA, BSN, RN
is a personal & career coach working with
people who want to create a great life. Call
now to explore how coaching would work for you
(484) 530-5024. Sign up for our e-newsletter
or write to Julie@nurturingyoursuccess.com.