To be independent is to not be influenced or controlled by others in matters of opinion, conduct or other such actions. While it is impossible to be totally independent from the influence of others, in fact, it is wise to take input from others and make use of good ideas, the concept of being an independent person is to have the final say in one’s own life.
To be independent is to be self-determining. Taking a look at the landscape of choices, considering different factors, but using your own judgment to render your decision free of the need to at hear to another’s preset rules or implied guidelines.
This type of conscious freedom comes with responsibility. The responsibility not to harm others, and to make choices that will benefit one’s own life. The art of independence is to remain independent. Without responsibility, independence turns into archaic impulses that will lead to the disillusionment of true freedom, and allow those very impulses to call the shots.
Respecting the autonomy of others must also be part of the art. One cannot be independent while taking another’s.
The input of others
I believe that it is necessary to turn to another for help when needed, consider prospective from different people, and be an interconnected part of society, but it is not wise to allow others to define us, adopt belief systems without question, and take on others identity. When listening or taking advice or guidance from others, consider the source. Why are they telling you what they are telling you? Does it make sense to you? Even our best friends may not know what is best for us. Stay open, but stay conscious.
When we are acting with healthy independence, we are bold, confident, and well directed. We understand that as humans, we are in this together, but as individuals, we must make our own choices. We develop a strong sense of self, and we act in a way that respects others while making empowered moves to further our purpose.
How to maintain an independent mind
With all the noise that goes on around us each day, it can be pretty hard to stay free of subconscious influences. To maintain independence, we must stay proactive. Its all too easy to be followers. Its all too easy not to question religion, tradition, your Mother, your teacher and others, but its the only way you can grab freedom by the balls. Anybody that knows me knows I have no problem questioning things. I have been like that from a young age, which did not make me popular with adults to say the least. Here are just a few ways to start or maintain an independent mind and lifestyle.
1. Question your worldview.
We were all taught things both directly and indirectly that cause us to see things in the framework of others. To keep a check on that, question the things you were taught. As a project, write down 3 of the strongest opinions you have, and ask yourself if you really think that, or were you taught that. If you were taught that, then ask, does it feel right to you or make sense to you? Be brave enough to question even foundational principles to see what they are really made of!
2. Stay educated
One of the ways we fall victim to needless influence is the lack of information. Read, read, read. Learn, learn, learn. Come outside of your comfort zone of knowledge and take in information about all the world around you. Learn about different lifestyles, cultures, and pastimes. Get away from your favorite news stations every now and then and watch something new. Keep your mind fresh, and flowing with the river of knowledge that is out there. Travel, make different and open minded friends.
3. Understand and accept who you are
We have the best chance and maintaining independence in our life by understanding who we are. What do you like to do for fun? What causes are you passionate about? What kind of clothes are you into? Knowing yourself is not quite enough, you also must accept yourself for who you are as a person. Do not be afraid to assert what you like and what you think, but as mentioned above, be respectful of others in the process. Write down 3 things that you like or think that many around you do not. Look at them, take them in, and own them, without caring what somebody else may think of it.
Step up your confidence
Do you find that you put yourself down or discount your achievements when others bring them up? Do you negatively replay past events trying to figure out whether you could have said or done something different? Do you keep your thoughts and opinions to yourself or play them down because you feel they won’t matter?
You do not have to allow anxiety and lack of confidence to hold you back from being your true self. Lets have a conversation about how you can release the bonds of self-doubt so you can attract the relationships, success and lifestyle you desire. Its clutch time! Contact me!