November 6, 2014

being seen (another thing)...

In my last post, I shared about being seen (and an edge for me with a selfie)... I appreciate so very much the messages and comments I've received about the photo and about the blog post. (y'all are so kind!)

And I'd also like to add something about being seen.

Being seen will be (or look) different for different people - and it can be different at different times.

Mostly, it's about being you.

It's about letting people see the true you that you are.

It's about allowing your essence to be seen.

It's about sharing who you are - and there are soooo many ways to do that. (my post about purpose talks some about that)

Being seen doesn't have to be posting photos of yourself. Or writing a blog post or a book. Or making a video or teaching a class.

It can be any or all of those things (and more).

But mostly it's about not hiding.

Not hiding your true self.

Each of us, and at different times during life, will have times of sorta withdrawing or pulling inward, and other times of being more 'out there'... and again, all of this can happen and show up and be done in all sorts of ways, far too many to try to list.

It's individual. It's personal. Sometimes it truly isn't safe to be seen in certain ways - but that doesn't mean you can't allow yourself to be seen in other ways, or with certain people.

Being seen means wearing fewer masks, and wearing them less often. (But there are times when a mask can be helpful and sometimes even necessary.)

Being seen means living true to who you are, and letting others see the real you.

Being seen can happen when you're with only one person - or sharing yourself with one person.

And being seen can be a process... and a spiral...

But you'll know. You'll know, inside yourself, whether you're living most of your life being seen or whether you're mostly hiding.

The knowing is important.

Being honest with yourself about it is important.

It's not about forcing yourself into being seen in some way that you don't want, or you don't feel ready to do.

(and it doesn't have to be a literal interpretation of the words - as a matter of fact, it's possible to put hundreds of selfies online and still be hiding)

Being seen is about being real, being you, and being true to you.

And showing up that way in the world - in whatever way that means for you, and whatever 'world' you're in.

Being seen can be very quiet.

It can be gentle.

It can be intimate.

As I said in my last post - it's not about the numbers. It's not about how many people see you or hear you. It's not about being seen by doing the same things someone else is doing to be seen (we all have our own ways of being seen and sharing ourselves).

Yes... it's about showing up and putting yourself out there - but even that will be different for different people, and can vary and shift through time.

(putting yourself out there can happen in sooo many different ways)

The main thing is... being seen is about being you.

With how you live your life.

With how you share yourself with others.

With how you do whatever you do.

And with letting others see who you are.

November 4, 2014

on being seen...

It's late as I'm writing this. Almost midnight. I've been alternating between watching tv and checking out a few things online... and every time I glance at the computer screen, I see the facebook tab - and I've watched as the number of likes increases on a photo of myself I posted a couple of hours ago.

In those two hours, it's received 39 likes.

(That might be a small number to many people, but it's not typical for things I post on facebook to receive that many likes.)

But  - this blog post isn't about numbers of likes.

This post is about being seen.

I've blogged before about spending so much of my life being invisible. Feeling invisible. As well as deliberately trying to keep myself invisible, because it felt safer to be unseen.

In the past few years - for many reasons - I've stepped more and more outside of my comfort zone to let myself be more fully seen.

I've stepped more and more into my personal power.

But even with doing so, the fear of being seen didn't go away completely.

And it still hasn't.

What has happened, however, is this... The more I've let myself be seen, and the more ways I've let myself be seen, and the longer I've let myself be seen - it feels better.

And the more I step into my personal power and own it, the stronger I feel.

At the same time I'm letting myself be seen more, and in more ways - and the stronger I become in my own personal power - I'm also becoming more guarded in certain aspects. In some paradoxical way, it seems like I'm becoming both more public and more private at the same time.

But both things are connected to knowing and claiming my personal power.

And strengthening my boundaries (which I believe is a good thing).

And becoming more clear about what and how much I want to share, and who I choose to share with when it comes to me, my life, my self.

Being seen - on my terms.

It still feels vulnerable. Somewhat scary. Out of my comfort zone.

But I've been making the choice - more and more - to share myself.

To be seen.

With my work, with what I do, with what I believe, with who I am, with how I look.

(I've been active online since the early 1990s... and until about 3 years ago, I never put my picture publicly online)

I've been talking about this - sharing myself more, being seen - quite a bit lately.

I've been talking about it because it's been shifting my life in some big ways.

The more I do it, the more it takes hold, the more impact it has on me.

Letting ourselves be seen seems to do that.

Claiming who we truly are (which can be, I believe, a lifelong practice, continuing to evolve and deepen over time) causes shifts and ripples in all areas of life.

Not hiding - after years or even decades of being hidden to feel safe - can feel like scary wild breaking free.

Owning your power, owning who you are, can be magic.

(this is solar plexus chakra work, sweets - that chakra of personal power and individuation and self-actualization - but it's also throat chakra and heart and sacral and root, because this is so connected to embodying  your soul)

I took this photo earlier this evening. Not long after getting out of the shower, hair still wet, before I changed my fingernail polish to a different color, no makeup (I rarely ever wear makeup these days), my almost-53-year-old self looking at myself in the mirror.

I cropped it, re-sized it, added a filter to mute the color, and then I uploaded it to instagram with the setting to share it automatically to my personal facebook profile.

Before making the final tap on the screen to send the photo out into the world, I added these words:

Because I'm letting myself be seen more... #thisisme #endofday #wethair #owningmyedge #magicalgrace #gentleclarity #tell #donthavetohide

That last hashtag: #donthavetohide

Don't have to hide.

Don't have to hide.

I believe those words are important.

For me.

And for you.