I used to act like a completely different person around my family.
When I was with my friends or colleagues, I'd be outgoing, joyful, and an energetic ball of sunshine.
But around my mom and dad, I was the opposite—moody, volatile, and extremely awkward.
As I grew older, I realized that I was expending a tremendous amount of energy trying (often subconsciously) to be a different person around my parents.
It was no surprise that living at home and spending time with them was exhausting.
It was one of the biggest blockers in my life.
I was being inauthentic and pretending that I was okay with it when I wasn't.
I wanted to break free of the old, debilitating pattern of putting on a different face because that no longer served the people in my life or me.
I didn't want to spend the rest of my life unable to be my cheerful, loving self around my parents.
It was a gift I wanted to give them.
My most authentic self is who I naturally am when I am not trying. It's a profoundly fulfilling state of being that I want to spend as much of my life in as possible.
So I promised myself that I would show up as the same person no matter where I go or who I was with.
If I could be myself around my parents, enjoy my time spent with them, and love them with open arms, I would truly be living my best life.