Who are you? Who, who, who, who?

At the risk of having that old Who song stuck firmly in your head for the next few days, this is an important question that needs an answer, preferably from you.

So who are you? Are you the person you thought you would be? The person you want to be?

Few of us are totally happy with the person we have become. We know our flaws better than anyone else, and usually focus on those rather than our many positive traits.

Are you like that, even a little bit? If so, you may want to consider these suggestions that will help you accept and celebrate who you are, or compel you to make any changes that will make a positive difference.

1. Accept yourself. Acknowledge who you are and accept the good and the bad. If you tend to focus on the negative, then you downplay or ignore the good stuff. This does not mean though, that you should give up on self improvement. If there is a part of you that you don’t like, then fix it.

2. Be true to yourself. Don’t change simply to please others and don’t let others change you into someone they think you should be. Listen to your heart and then stay honest and true to you. When you do that, you will find it much easier to be open and honest with others.

3. Believe in yourself. You have already accomplished a great deal. Keep reminding yourself of all the terrific things you’ve done. Become your best friend, and constantly encourage yourself to do whatever it takes to achieve the goals you’ve set.

4. Improve Yourself. Despite the awesome person you are, there’s always room for improvement. It could be mentally, physically, psychologically or in just about any area of your life. Find one thing you can do to make yourself better and then do it. Chances are that, once you’ve completed that task, you will be motivated to chase another.

5. Empower yourself. Give yourself permission to do whatever it takes to achieve whatever you want to achieve. Refuse to believe the thought patterns that are dragging you down. Re-write them; turn them around so that you’re focusing on what’s good and what’s important to you.

6. Ask yourself ‘why’. If you are unhappy with a certain part of your life, ask yourself why. Honestly assess why something is dragging you down. Then ask yourself why it’s important to change that circumstance.

7. Surround yourself with good people. Look for those who will support and encourage, then distance yourself from those who drag you down. Be an encourager as well. Many people you know are facing similar struggles to yours.

8. Thank yourself. Learn to be grateful in all things, even when times are tough. If you will thank yourself for your powerful character traits, you will love yourself more. If you thank your legs for holding you up, or your eyes for giving you sight, or any other part of your anatomy, you will respect yourself more.

9. Take care of yourself. When you get caught up in life’s little challenges, you may forget some of the basics. Like getting enough sleep. Or eating three healthy meals each day. Getting sufficient exercise, even if it’s only a 20-minute walk. When you look after your body you have more energy and sharper instincts.

10. Ask for help. Sometimes a more objective approach is helpful. You may be so overwhelmed that you can’t even figure out what the issue is. A trusted friend can help. Someone who will listen carefully, refrain from judgment and give you an honest assessment. Someone who will not betray your confidence.

11. Focus on today. Forget about yesterday; what’s done is done. And you have no control over tomorrow, so don’t worry about it. Target what needs to be done today, because this day is a gift. That’s why they call it the present.

12. Be aware of your thoughts. What you think is what you will become, so be very aware of your predominant or consistent thoughts. If your self-talk is always negative you will have zero chance of achieving success. Focus instead on the good people and things you are experiencing in life. Dare to dream big dreams.

13. Use affirmations. Find a favorite quote or mantra that you can repeat often, every day, out loud. Repeat as necessary. 100 times each day is not excessive, because the more you say it, the more you will believe it. Your truth statement should obviously address the area you want to improve.

14. Help others. Reach out and help someone else, especially when you are feeling helpless. You will receive tremendous personal satisfaction in return, knowing that you helped make someone’s life a little bit better. You will also feel more confident, because you recognize that you have the potential to change lives.

15. Find a higher power. Sometimes the help you need is not available in this dimension. Find something in the universe that’s bigger than you and me, then look for wisdom through prayer or meditation. We can’t possibly have all the answers, but when we open our minds we allow miracles to happen.

16. Dress for success. Sad to say, but many people today no longer take pride in their appearance. Don’t be like that. Even when you’re home alone, dress as if someone important is about to knock on your door. That includes hair and makeup. When you look good, you feel good.

17. Do something on your Bucket List. Do you even have one? You should. It’s never too early to start listing all the crazy things you want to do before, well … before you can’t any more. These activities are what dreams are made of, and you should start living your dreams. Pick something outrageous and then go for it!

18. Market yourself. Look at your favorite brands and determine how they found someone like you to love them. What image did they portray that appealed to your senses? Figure it out and then copy it.

19. Volunteer. Find a cause you believe in and find a way to help advance it. If you love animals, volunteer at the SPCA. If you have a heart for people, serve them at a homeless shelter. There’s no shortage of opportunities to give a little bit of yourself back to the community, and feel real good about doing it.

20. Relax. Take some me-time and find a few stress-relieving outlets. Get away for some quiet time, read a book or go for a walk. Do something for you that will calm your universe, if only for a few moments.

21. Say hi. Greet people on the street with a friendly hello. Smile at other people as you stroll down the mall. Gently tip your coffee cup towards someone you see drinking the same brand. Simply stated, lower your guard a little bit and allow others to enter your world.

22. Be positive. Try to find the good in everything, even if you’re not in favor of the situation. Be affirming around others. It’s so easy for us to focus on the negative, but a word of encouragement works so much better. Your spark of enthusiasm may be the catalyst that will change your world.

23. Tell jokes. Ha ha. So maybe you’re not the best storyteller in the world. Maybe you can’t always remember the punch line. But the ability to tell a joke or a funny story will endear you to others and boost your confidence. Give it a try, even if you fail miserably the first few times.

24. Laugh more. If telling jokes isn’t for you, laugh at the humor generated by others. Laughing is a formidable stress reliever and one of the healthiest things you can do. Immerse yourself in the lives of happy people, and watch more funny movies.

We are all a product of our environment. Our personalities began to form almost from the day we were born. So the person we are today is the result of years of influence in every part of our lives.

It may take a village to raise a child but that same village formed has the child into the person they have become.

You’re not perfect, you never will be. But if there’s something you would like to change about yourself, why not give it a try? Use some of these suggestions to get you going, and begin creating the person that you would like to become.

You can do it. You’re awesome!

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