Q: This year I often feel like I can’t speak my mind because people will make fun of me. I feel like I am two different people. One side of me is my ‘school-self’ and my other side is my ‘home-self’.

A: I think that we can all relate to this.

I remember my ‘school self’ being different from my ‘home self’. My ‘school self’ was more self conscious – worried about what others thought about me – wanting to be liked and accepted by everyone. I did have confident moments and many good times in school, but I seemed to have a little naggy voice in my head saying – ‘What will they think? – Do they really like me?’

Looking back, I can see that there were times when those self defeating thoughts stopped me from being totally free to Just be Me.

My ‘homeself’ felt and still does feel Free – a place where I allow myself to relax and be me. When I am home I don’t worry about my clothes matching or what my hair looks like. I can choose to change into my pjs as soon as I step inside the door and I can choose to feel my true emotions in the comfort of my own room without worrying about feeling judged.

When you feel that you are not being who you really are, you are most likely worried about what other people are thinking about you. The true essence of who you are should not change from place to place. If, for example, you are someone who is respectful of yourself and of others, that needs to be noticable wherever you are regardless of what others may think of you.

Having a safe place where you feel comfortable to Just Be You and to feel whatever it is you are feeling, is very important. It helps us to stay balanced, to release and to re-energize.

In all honesty I still have moments when I worry about what other people think about me. But now I recognize those moments.

That recognition now gives me choices:
· To allow those thoughts to hold me back from being me
· To notice the thought and take a stand for who I am regardless of the opinions of others

If you feel as though you have to pretend to be someone or something that you are not in order to ‘fit in’, not only is it exhausting, but it’s also frustrating. Your true friends will accept you for who you are.

Find that happy medium between your ‘home self’ and your ‘school self’. Being true to You will be way more fulfilling than trying to be someone that you are not.

At the end of the day when you look in the mirror, I believe it is imperative that you can say ‘I am proud of who I was today.’

Until next time…

This has been ‘my voice’ but I respect that this is your life, this is ‘your choice’


P.S. If you are faced with a circumstance where you need help, one of the best UPower choices you can make is to Reach Out to your parents/adults, teachers, principals, counsellors, friends or www.kidshelpphone.ca to get the support you deserve.
Keep reaching out until someone listens.