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At What Cost Should we Remain True to Ourselves?

August 27, 2019

Its my monthly non travel post, so that means it’s Cuppa and a Chat time you lovely lot. I know its a little later in the month than usual, but there is a fair bit going on in my life right now! Forgive me??? So, in this cuppa and a chat, a different subject to the one that was being posted originally, I want to talk about the cost that can be involved in staying true to ourselves. I want us to discuss how speaking our truth can come at a high price, and ask you if you feel that the cost is worth it. I also want to explore if social media plays a part in how true we are to ourselves these days. Grab your cuppa’s people, its time to talk about how it can come at a expense to our heart to remain true to ourselves. We are going in…..

remain true to ourselves
Cuppa and a chat

As ever, I like to tell you a little about the background to the cuppa and a chat posts. I feel it gives you context and an understanding/example of where it comes from. So lets start with what you perhaps already know. I would imagine, if you have been around my little corner of the internet for a while, that you would know by now that I am not afraid to stick my head above the parapet if I feel strongly about something. I will not ever be drawn into battles that are not my circus, or trivial things that are unimportant, not ever, but neither will I people please if asked an opinion etc. I am passionate and upfront about what I believe in, but have no issue with someone disagreeing with me, or showing me another point of view. I had many discussions with people relating to the post, and learnt a lot! After all, its good to share experiences and opinions. I am a grown adult and a strong woman. I like adult discussion!

As human beings, we are all different. Some of us love tea, some never touch it. Some of us dream of foreign lands, some of us are home bodies. Some of us choose the fruit at desert, (weirdo’s) some of us (me) grab the cupcake. It is totally natural for us as people to have different likes and dislikes. That is the same with people in your life. Some people will love you, some will not care for you and that is ok to! (We spoke about this in the post Your just not Everyones cup of tea, pop over and read that one after if you fancy it).

remain true to ourselves
its normal to not be someones cup of tea

However, recently I was a little blindsided by something that I saw, that I knew was directed at me, but not said directly to me. I had seen the comment totally by chance and accident as I don’t follow them on social media, (maybe the universe had my back and I was led to it???…) and I felt a bubble of hurt swell up. Now, it could be because of the stress I am under at the moment with my family life, but I was definitely more sensitive to the passive aggressive comment than I would usually be.

The situation in brief was, (and there is no shade here, I wish them well) this person had obviously disagreed with something that I had said about a current topic. But, instead of bringing it to me and having a discussion, or helping me to see their point of view, they took to playground gang behaviour and side swipes. What hurt the most was that I had a genuine affection for this person, and I thought, a relationship. I had always been honest with them if they asked me a question. Always tried to check on them in tough times. Wished them nothing but good wishes. Showed support to them by sharing opportunities that were not in my niche. Genuinely cared about them! I was hurt and confused that I was not afforded that same level of respect back.

remain true to ourselves
look at all sides

Many, many years ago, before I started working on myself inwardly, my hurt would have converted into anger and I would have bitten. I would have fought with fire and gone for the jugular. In those days I would have pushed the hurt back, replacing it with anger for self preservation. These days, I always cool my engines and give my mind time to work through it. I try to see where their nastiness comes from, look at how they could be viewing the situation, try to see their side. I let myself feel what I am feeling and work through it. I acknowledge that it hurts, and deal with that rather than letting anger rise up. I also accept that my nature is pretty upfront, my friends are all the same, so I suppose I have the unrealistic notion that everyone is? I acknowledge that and its a lesson.

So what cost do we pay to remain true to ourselves?

But one thing I will never do, is apologise for feeling how I feel and speaking my truth. I have no doubt in my mind that I could have perhaps worded things differently in my statement, I was pretty blunt and unfiltered (as I know I tend to be when I am passionate about something). But I am also only human, I sometimes speak from a place of emotion and did so on this day. I am totally self aware enough to know that I temporarily allowed my ego to word my statement, not my heart. I had taken the post down long before I saw this barbed comment, as I had quickly realised my desire to be heard, my frustration at the situation momentarily outweighed my level headedness and my words were careless. Then, after seeing the comment, I did some reflecting and meditating on what was said. I realised that my perhaps my delivery was to blunt and while most people got my point, it could also be seen as harsh. I would have apologised for that had the discussion been brought to me, but never my passion for the cause.

remain true to ourselves
I am what I am, with no apologies

So for me, the cost of remaining true to myself was the breakdown of a blossoming, albeit casual relationship. I am sad about that. I like people and as I say, I felt a genuine compassion towards the person. Of course I would feel an element of sadness. But, I will not compromise myself or stop walking my own path. I felt hurt, a little shaken, but very quickly knew that I would not hand over my personal power to anyone. Their quickness to take a swipe at me, rather than tell me that they disagreed, made me see that I had afforded them more respect in my past honesty, than they were affording me. It doesn’t make them a bad person, just different to me and I will always walk away from negative behaviour. Jeeezzz I have enough on my plate and you can only meet someone as deeply as they have met themselves can’t you. Not anyone’s fault, no one is better than the other, it just is what it is and everyone is on their own journey. I’ll get over it…

It did make me wonder if social media facilitates the way people react. Was it easier for them to react that way because of the facelessness of social media? If we had been standing in a room together, would a discussion have more likely taken place? We would have agreed to disagree and moved on? Has social media made people lazy conversationalists? Made people more ready to go mean girl than discuss? The written word can be misconstrued after all can’t it? Does social media have a part to play in the cost we pay for speaking our minds? A friend of mine, Binny from Binny’s food and travel diaries, speaks often about her passion for wildlife selfies (I have linked to one of her posts, have a read) She has received some kick back and rudeness from that on social media, rather than people contacting her for an adult discussion. Is it easier to be mean from behind a screen? I would love to hear you thoughts on this.

remain true to ourselves
Does social media have a part to play?

Anyway, I decided then and there that I would not allow anyone to make me feel crap about myself, or suppress my passion. Again, were I not going through the daily fight to keep my head above the water that I am facing with Nik’s cancer, their comment would have just been dismissed from my mind. Block, send them love, shrug, move on. But it did make me realise that sometimes, being true to yourself can come at a cost. In my case, being made to feel crap for a while and the loss of a relationship. I also know that from any situation, no matter what it is or how crap or painful it is, you can always learn.

remain true to ourselves

In this case, I learnt that at times, despite my years of soul work, I can still act recklessly in emotion. I learnt that my expectations on how I saw a relationship had caused me pain, but it’s not their fault they saw the relationship differently. I learnt that my passion for the subject I had voiced an opinion on was high, so I should do something more constructive to channel it (more about that in a future post). I learnt that my current family situation can make me more susceptible to hurt, so I should be a little more cautious who I allow near. I learnt that someone else’s opinion of me has never mattered, and reminded myself that nor does it now. I learnt that actually, I am willing to pay the cost when I believe in something. I also learnt that my Mum, despite me being 46 years old, will still want to kick anyone’s butt that upsets her baby……lol

So you beautiful people, over to you. Tell me your thoughts on this subject. Have you ever had to pay the price for speaking your heart? Can you also be reckless when you are passionate about a subject? Do you find that you hold onto your words for fear of repercussions? Has being on social media made you more outspoken or less? Do you find that you suppress the things that rile you up? Does your need to be liked outweigh your need to be a voice? Have you been subject to backlash for speaking your mind in private or work? Do you think as a society we are encouraged to people please and “not rock the boat” I would love to hear what you are thinking, what experiences you have had. As ever, all opinions are welcome and encouraged. It is a chat after all!

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17 responses to “At What Cost Should we Remain True to Ourselves?”

  1. Susanne says:

    I honestly think that social media brings out the worst in people. Lately I’ve even thought that comment forms should ber removed from some parts of the internet, because can’t handle it. When they can hide behind a screen, they can’t behave.
    I hate drama, so I avoid controversial things on the internet. Yes, that also means that I don’t go into important discussions, not even if it’s things that really matter to me. It’s just not worth the energy it takes to go into debate. I’m generally sick of how people behave on the internet and choose to stick to what I believe in (but stay updated with science news) and stay out of discussion. I only want peace and quiet. If I’ve posted a comment somewhere (usually on Facebook) and it generates too much backlash, I actually remove my comment, because I didn’t mean to cause debate and have no interest in trying to convince people who don’t want to be convinced. Actually – if I open Facebook and see tons of new notifications, I wonder “what have I done wrong now?”. That is kind of sad! Of course I like notifications, but only about good and interesting things, not because someone hated what I wrote.. so now I usually just move on without commenting, because I don’t think the drama is worth it.

    • kerrylifeandloves says:

      Ahh that is interesting Susanne, that you think it actually brings it out in people rather than just facilitates it. I totally see where you are coming from. I too hate drama, and confrontation, which is why I pick my battles. I dont get pulled into anyone else’s (except family if need be) and only speak out if I feel a genuine passion. O stay away from negative people, and those that bring my energy down. So if someone disagrees with say, your comment on facebook, does it bring you anxiety, or can you just not be bothered? Do you find people are more aggressive in the written word than they would be if you were at a gathering with them or something?

  2. beremy10 says:

    I think social media makes it so easy for people to react without thinking properly. Keyboard warriors who type without thinking and often type nasty things – ever read the Daily Mail comments? I love to hate them. Some are interesting and many are just plain nasty. I can’t do it every day. However, I’m in two minds because at work I’m fed up with the people who ‘tell it like it is’. That’s how they think it is and usually it has a cynical and uninformed bias. It isn’t ‘how it is’ in my view. What I am sure of is that people choose what they want to believe – not what the evidence is. Jeremy Corbyn and Boris Johnson will never ever do right for some people. Your friend could have given you the benefit of the doubt or spoken to you but perhaps felt unable to or has made an assumption about you that you may never change. My advice – because of other things you are more sensitive to it and hopefully it’s out of your system a bit.

    • kerrylifeandloves says:

      Ohhh you add so many interesting points here, thank you! I think you are dead right, some people act without thinking. In some ways, I maybe did with my original post as it was from a place of emotion and frustration. I totally get that if its an non-personal response or comment.I also agree with you that some people who “tell it like it is” actually have far too big an ego to think there is any other way than how they think it is! They are often not interested in hearing anyone else’s view. With regard to my situation, I value myself way to much to try to convince anyone of my worth or intent.I am over the situation completely, but it certainly gave me food for thought on how we have to sometimes pay the price. I find it very interesting, and the social media element adds to that interest. Maybe because I a not a “child of the internet age” it baffles me slightly how crazy it makes us all. Thank you so much for adding to the discussion. I blooming love hearing everyones view xx

  3. I thought we hadn’t seen one of your cuppa and a chat posts for a while!

    I too am pretty outspoken and it gets me into bother sometimes. I often feel upset if people have misinterpreted what I said or portrayed it unfairly. Playground nastiness can take you off guard as well though, especially if you didn’t see it coming. I was once working on a project in another country and suddenly had a bunch of racist messages from a bunch of service users just because I was doing my job and they happened not to like it – so needed a reason not to like me – and my different nationality was the first one they found.

    I think there are people who look up to those who generally speak their mind without worrying what everyone’s going to think. Sometimes, I believe people try to emulate that, but they do it badly, so what comes out is meanness and aggression, rather than passion or a genuine if somewhat direct approach.

    Sometimes people think they’ll get more likes or attention if they play the victim or rally people round to attack someone else. If someone can only feel good about themselves when they’re looking down on others, then they’re not really a person worth having around!

    I do think it’s true though that if we’re feeling a bit more fragile emotionally, things can get to us more than they would normally. That’s not a bad thing, it’s just human nature. So try and keep people who will bring you down at arm’s length for a while and surround yourself with people who will do you good!

    Thanks for another thought-provoking post XX

    • kerrylifeandloves says:

      I know, a few people had messaged about it. I did do one last month, but towards the beginning of the month so it has probably been about 6 weeks! I will try to keep to schedule lol
      With me, I dont think that I am outspoken, but I suppose I must be. I certainly stand up for what I believe in. My arrest when I was with the hunt saboteurs tells me that haha! I am sorry that you had to be subjected to racist rubbish, that it not outspoken, that just bully tactics! I think you make a good point, its the surprise of it feeling like it comes from nowhere that takes you off your feet for a bit. Your first instinct is to defend yourself isnt it, but that comes from a place of ego, in wanting to be right, so I tend to hold my silence instead.
      Thats interesting that you think some people that go on a witch hunt are actually trying to emulate the other persons confidence. I think you make a great point and I had not thought of that.
      Oh I certainly don’t spend time with b=negative people. Even prior to the stress we are now facing, I just like to be around positive souls that lift each other up. I absolutely love hearing everyones opinion in these posts. It makes me so happy that I learn from you guys as well as hopefully sharing my own knowledge xx Thank you

  4. Susanne says:

    I’m sorry but I still can’t reply to your replies to my comment! Everything comes as a new comment.. Anyway, I’m not sure if I believe social media facilitates or actually brings out the worst in people. It definitely facilitates being horrible to other people, although I don’t understand how people do it on sites like Facebook where they have to use their real names. I don’t believe much in the good of humanity (planet destruction, wars, fascism etc..) but I know most people probably wouldn’t say half of the things they write on social media if they were in a real life discussion!
    Regarding my own comments on social media and if people disagree with them, it’s not that it gives me anxiety (I think) but it annoys me that people have to comment back and create drama ALL THE TIME on things they disagree with.. I mean there is the option of just scrolling by – I do that most of the time and it’s quite easy. I don’t really understand why people spend so much time arguing with people they don’t know – don’t they have more important things to do?? I use social media for entertainment, keeping in touch with people and a little bit to keep informed about events etc, not for debate. And when I open my Facebook I want my notifications to be entertaining, nice or informative. If I get bad stuff on there it annoys me to bits because they are wasting my time and energy, and I suppose that’s the main reason why I delete my own comments that generate not-so-nice replies – they take too much energy. I’m not sure if this answered your question..

    • kerrylifeandloves says:

      No need to apologise at all. I appreciate your views xx Ahhh I see what you mean now, and I am with you a million percent. Unless if affects me directly, I will scroll on by. My Nan had a saying, Not my circus, not my monkeys. I am in agreement with her! I do think ego plays a part with some people. they just cant stand to be challenged. It is interesting isnt it. I sometimes feel like social media was invented as a massive human experiment hahahah! it’s blooming barmy. Thank you so much for answering so fully. you have given me even more food for thought. Thank you xxx

  5. Laurie says:

    As you know I hate Instagram and this is one of the reasons why. Us women are supposed to be supporting one another not tearing each other down. Being a very mature fashion/beauty blogger I know I’m in the firing line for some nasty comments. Luckily it’s only happened a couple of times and I’m happy to laugh it off. I’m a lot tougher than a lot of people most probably think I am.
    Can I just say though Kerry. You being upfront and saying exactly how you feel and put across is what drew me to you in the first place. They’re most probably jealous! xx

    • kerrylifeandloves says:

      I do think it is sad that so many people feel that they cannot express an opinion or view, without being shot down. What has ahppened to adult discussion! We dont have to agree with everything each other says, just agree to disagree. Christ we do it in our family all the time as we are all pretty strong willed! (and loud with the amount of cousins I have) I do think that social media facilitates a dark side of people. Im the same as you Laurie, Im blooming tough and can brush most things off. To be fair, its the first time I have had anything like this and it did actually get me thinking so every cloud and all that…….hahahaha

  6. Alex Grace says:

    I can totally understand how upsetting that must have been – I’ve had a few experiences in my personal life where I believed the relationship was one way & then found out, sometimes quite hurtfully that they viewed it another. Reaching a place in life where you know (and are OK with the fact) that not everyone is going to like you is actually quite freeing. I just wish, as kind human beings, we would act with more love & empowerment towards each other. I see passive agressive comments all the time on SM and it makes me feel sad, but I guess, rightly or wrongly, that is their way of seeking validation. It’s not for me, I deal with things differently. Like you’ve said before, each to their own. You don’t need unnecessary negativity in your life, so thankfully, you’ve rooted it out and can positively move on xxx

    • kerrylifeandloves says:

      Firstly Alex, how spooky. I was literally reading your most recent post when a notification came up that you had left a comment…..
      Anyway, thank you so much for joining in the discussion. I am sorry that you have had that hurt. It can be confusing can’t it. You are left thinking blimey, I read that situation wrong lol
      Do you think that people that leave passive aggressive comments would not be that way in real life? That social media gives them a platform to take swipes that they wouldn’t do in a face to face situation? I am curious about that. I wonder if social media is a bit of an enabler to bad behaviour? Especially for the people that tend to spend a large portion of their time on social media. I would love to know if there has been studies done on that sort of thing. I often feel that social media was invented as part of a large human social experiment hahaha! I am actually someone that does not like confrontation, so will always pick my battles so thankfully, its the first time I have come across this sort of thing personally. Its a bit sad that so many feel they need to filter themselves from fear of repercussions isn’t it. Thanks for reading xxx

      • Alex Grace says:

        LOL Kerry – that is spooky! Our energies were obviously drawn together today lovely!
        Yes it did hurt, especially as I had only been nice & trusting in each of the situations but you live and you learn (and to be honest, for a few of the situations, I can’t remember their names now)
        With regards to the passive agressiveness, I do believe SM provides a platform. It’s like they want to say what they really feel about a situation, but have to use a side door so to speak. I’ve had someone accuse my children of having no personality on FB only because they were well-behaved in a situation and another person’s children were not. But I didn’t react, even though I knew they were talking about me, I saw the comment for what it was.
        Yes, I agree it is sad, especially if the message they’re filtering is for the greater good and comes from a better intentioned place – great read as always Kerry xx

  7. Zoe says:

    Hi Kerry,

    I think social media provides a platform for people to write things they would never say to that persons face. When I’m using social media before I post I ask myself would I say this to that person if they were stood in front of me. If not then I wouldn’t write it on the internet. I believe social media allows some people to either dehumanise people or not take accountability for their own words. In general social media does allow people to be more reactive, as in the heat of that moment you can type it out, it’s more instant. In the “old days” before social media you had time to think about it and decide if it was really worth the time and energy.

    I am quite direct and I speak my mind which I find is hard for other people at times. From being a teenager I have found that some people struggle with this but I think this says more about them. I am never nasty and always try to consider what the impact might be on that person (that doesn’t mean I haven’t and still don’t get it wrong sometimes). It has cost me friendships and caused many arguments, as someone said I was being mean to them, when they were being negative and I asked them why they were being negative. I am learning that I am not responsible for how other people react, providing what I have said comes from a good place and is truthful. Then how someone reacts is on them.

    • kerrylifeandloves says:

      I think that is a great way to think Zoe, “would I say this face to face” You are right, social media can make people forget that it is actually real people and real emotions behind an instagram handle etc. Thats a good point. I suppose it can also give those that are perhaps not so forth right in real life, a way in which they can voice things they are not confident enough to in their day to day. I personally will never understand why people dont just talk to each other, but again, you make a good point by saying its on them. Nothing we can do about someones attitude is there. Thats why I prefer to just walk away from them haha! Thank you so much for joining in the discussion x

  8. It’s so easy to hide behind your keyboard – some of the comments I read on other bloggers pages are horrendous and I can’t imagine people would ever so those things if they were face to face with that person. I’m not very good at speaking out and telling someone if they’ve annoyed me but I think that’s partly my star sign as well. I did it once in a meeting where someone said I wasn’t doing my job properly and I asked them for some examples…the whole room fell silent but I wasn’t going to let that nasty woman get one up on me! She was a bully!!!
    Em x

    • kerrylifeandloves says:

      Ahhhh I can just imagine you thinking errrr, No way lady! haha I do think that social media facilitates people being a bit more confrontational, but that makes me lose respect for them. What is wrong with having an adult discussion these days! Thank you for joining the discussion lovely xxx

I love reading your comments x

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