In this episode, I talk about the concept of being yourself. We hear it proclaimed how important it is to be yourself. But what if being yourself causes an issue for someone else?
What got me interested in talking about this concept is that I was watching The Dropout, a TV Mini-Series about Theranos and its founder, Elizabeth Holmes.
Do you always want the entire world to see the real you? All of you, or just the parts that are the best? Is there a line? Please listen to the podcast, and let me know if you agree – where is your line?
Full transcript below.
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Mike Malatesta 00:05
Hi, everyone, thank you for joining me for another solo Friday episode of the How’d It Happen Podcast powered by WINJECT Studios. I’ve been thinking a lot about being myself. Like, what does it mean to be myself? Am I always myself, have I always been myself? And you know, a lot of people say, you know, be yourself, the power that you have in your life is to be yourself. And I do believe that.
What got me what got me interested in talking about this with you is that I was watching the series about Theranos, and the founder of Theranos, Elizabeth Holmes. I don’t remember which streaming it’s on, but it’s pretty good series. It’s like six or seven shows that kind of take you through the history of the company she founded, which is called Theranos. And along the way, she’s very young, when she started this company, and they go through these different people who came into her life who influenced her and how she changed, and it’s a very dramatic change in the in the show, so much change that she sort of takes on the persona of Steve Jobs, including dressing like Steve Jobs used to dress and changing her voice and just some really meaningful changes. And obviously, I haven’t met her, I’ve never talked to her, but if I did, it would be interesting to see if these changes were as dramatic as they were in the show. I’m hoping they weren’t, but maybe.
Anyway, her experience going through this and those changes made me think about what it means to be myself. On the one hand, I’ve never had any trouble being myself, because I’ve never had any option, right? And I was thinking about it and, well, it’s true. And not true. You know, literally it’s true. I’ve always been me, you know, my body has never been hijacked by someone else. So, I’ve really just been me. But on the other hand, it’s not true. Because there have been times when I’ve not wanted people to see or experience the real me, meaning the whole me. I only wanted them to see the parts that I liked, or the parts that I thought maybe look, you know, best. And the rest I kind of hid or suppressed. Suppressed is maybe a better word.
Today, I think that I’m more like myself than I’ve ever been. And I think that part of that is due to me writing my book Owner Shift which really I use that as a way to get more of myself or expose more of myself than I ever have in my whole life, and that was very scary but it was also super helpful because I was able to get a lot of the parts out about me that were really getting in the way of me showing people who I was, what is the collection of all of my experiences, but you know, I still don’t think it’s completely safe. It’d be interesting to hear if you agree or disagree with this, but I still don’t feel like it’s completely safe or maybe a better thing is that it’s completely warranted for me to be myself, what people call you know my truth or whatever, all the time because sometimes what I am and the way I would react to things, for example, could hurt someone else, maybe with an offhand comment or a harsh critique. You know, that’s how I really feel, that is myself, but then I look at it and I say, well, what’s the point? Right, you know, doing something like that, you know, doesn’t support the myself that I want to be, and not doing it doesn’t hurt the myself that I want to be either.
So I feel like there’s always this line. And, you know, Elizabeth Holmes in the Theranos series, she certainly walks a line that I’m definitely not walking any longer. And I hope you’re not walking a line like that, where you’re essentially almost pretending to be someone else. I’m fortunate that I don’t think I’ve ever done that, at least not the whole. Maybe you emulate little parts here and there, but I don’t know that it’s ever a good idea to be 100% me, especially if it would cause me to take a shot at somebody, which might be what I want to do and what I think is appropriate, but if there’s not a value to it, like I’m not coaching them, for example, or they haven’t invited my opinion into their world, I just feel like I should keep it to myself. That’s so funny. Being myself is about keeping things to myself sometimes. That’s a great place to end. I do thank you so much for investing your time in me today with this solo episode and until next time, maximize your greatness.