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Rediscovering Yourself
Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD posted:
Many people struggle with losing themselves in their relationships and eventually feel confused and lonely, and wonder who they really are.

If you can relate to this, it's important to know that you can rediscover (or find for the first time) a sense of knowing and being comfortable with yourself. You can do this through compassionate self-awareness, a combination of self-awareness and self-compassion. By being self-aware, you can reconnect with your experiences. And then with self-compassion, you will want to soothe any pain you feel and help yourself be happier. In the end, you can re-discover yourself and what makes you happy within yourself and with your partner.

To better understand compassionate self-awareness, watch this short video of me discussing the topic.)

What have your experiences been with getting lost in a relationship? And, if you have "found" yourself again, how did you do this and how did this affect your relationship.

If you would like to read more in detail about this topic in my The Art of Relationships blog, click here .

Dr. Becker-Phelps's discussions and her responses in those discussions are for general educational purposes only. If you need help for an emotional or behavioral problem, please seek the assistance of a psychologist or other qualified mental health professional.
1nt3rnalc0mbu5t1on responded:
Dr. LBP,

I can completely relate to this topic. In past relationships, all of them actually now that i think about it, i have lost myself or my way. I have mentioned this before in other posts as well. The reason for myself personally losing myself, is because I didnt and still am not 100% sure of who "I" really am. For me its a constant struggle, because I never really gained a voice. I just went about my business and went with the flow. Even most of my hobbies are because another person influenced me to try them. There wasnt a whole lot of self discovery about myself, i just adapted to what other people did and made it my own. Looking back and knowing what i know now about depression, the connections started to go off like fireworks. So for me, not allowing myself to explore different things and just mimic what others did to find excitement, i never found what really excites me. As i got older and began dating that was my excitement, the initial rush of falling in love, etc. But as that wore off, i didnt know where to go from there, thus leading to a boring, complacent relationship, which ultimately would end.

As I am trying discover myself and I have gotten older, I am finding it to be even more difficult now than ever. Mostly because i make excuses, I dont have the time, the money or anyone to do those things with. I know there are groups out there who focus primarily on just that, but emotionally and mentally, I am not ready to throw myself to a group of strangers.

Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD replied to 1nt3rnalc0mbu5t1on's response:
IC,I'm glad that you connected with this and have the insight about your behavior. Challenging ourselves is always difficult. But by remaining aware of the ways that you are limiting yourself and that you would prefer a better life for yourself, you will hopefully find a way to engage in more self-discovery. Also, keep in mind that it is okay to pursue a path that you learned from someone else -- we all borrow ideas from others -- the important part is to consider whether it fits for you as you try it out.

You might find it helpful to approach the situation by setting goals for yourself. Many people also find it helpful to break their goals into manageable steps. And, if you think that this community would be supportive, you might want to share your goals here and get encouragement. If you are really at a loss, your first goal might be to develop a way to find interests to try out -- something that this community can help you with, too.

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