We live in a society where self-medication and self-numbing is rampant. Everyone is attempting to escape themselves through distractions and escapism of all kinds. We become addicted to these distractions that take us away from the present moment, away from reality. These addictions can be towards literally anything – overthinking, negativity, sensory pleasures, mindlessness, television, food, porn, anything.
Whenever you see a couple out in public and one leaves to use the restroom, notice how quickly the other person goes to reach for their phone. Or the next time you get home from work notice how quickly you turn on the TV or go to smoke or to grab a beer.
This need for stimulation is rooted in an inability to be still, alone, and at home with yourself. It’s rooted in a lack of connection with yourself and a lack of comfort with who you are. We are constantly running away from ourselves, but we shouldn’t be. We should dive into who we are with complete and total acceptance.
How to Be at Ease With Yourself
This need to numb ourselves is a result of us wanting to hide from how we feel or because we want to forget some painful truth. So we alter our experience of reality in order to avoid it. But continuing down this path of escapism will not lead you to a life of happiness and it will never address the underlying issues affecting you. Rather your addiction to escapism will get worse and worse until you hit rock bottom.
To be at ease with yourself you first need to realize that you are already good enough. Whenever you attach an external factor to your self-worth, you’re implying that without that thing you are not enough. You, by yourself and on your own, are enough. You should certainly strive to better yourself, but not as a way to escape yourself or to receive approval. You should better yourself because you already love yourself.
Secondly, understand that you don’t need to always feel good. You don’t need to be happy to be at ease with yourself. Being at ease means accepting your reality for what it is. If you’re depressed, angry, stressed, lonely, whatever, don’t run or hide from that, rather accept it and dive into it. By hiding from it through escapism you will always be holding on to baggage. By accepting it you can work through it and then actually let it go.
Becoming fully at ease with yourself requires doing inner work. It requires facing that which you hate about yourself and allowing yourself to love that part of you again. Some great types of inner work include psychoanalytic writing centered around probing your unconscious, different types of meditations and cathartic releases, diving into your past pain and trauma, as well as having a coach or therapist work through this with you.