You feel like you want to escape the rut you’re in. You might be wrestling with expectations at work, at home, among friends, or within a relationship. Or, you might be a perfectionist getting caught up in your own trappings.
You know that feeling overwhelmed and trapped like this doesn’t fit your nature.
Freeing the nature within is what I call ‘Self Wilding‘ and in this article, I list the seven keys to living by your true nature for fulfilment.
What is Self Wilding?
Self Wilding is about freeing your inner self to be who you need to be – to be you. It is not about loneliness in the wilderness or the brash kind of wildness.
It’s about feeling whole and balanced and connecting with the nature within and the nature around you.
Some would call this freeing the inner child — “the feeling part of us that loves to play and explore…that thrives on ‘simply’ being instead of achieving….the vulnerable, feeling, spontaneous, creative self”.¹ Others refer to it as the spiritual self. But for me, it is simply our inner nature.
Look deep into nature, and there you will understand everything better ~ Einstein
Why is Freeing the Self Important?
I wrote an article about balance in the war of True Self vs Ego. In it, I explain how we have our ego, our personas, and other’s perspectives that ride us, day in and day out.
While these outer layers have a place, the importance we give to each or all of them in determining who we are, or what we do, matters.
Giving too much credence to them drains us of our true essence. That’s my take. It inhibits us and we feel trapped.
Carl Jung described the persona as our outward mask and the self as our ultimate aim to give us a sense of unity or wholeness ¹.
Jung argued that “man’s progressive alienation from his instinctual foundation” contributed to modern life’s problems ².
…”your challenge is to take the ego from its dominant position and pull it back so that it’s in service to yourself.” ~ Caroline McHugh in the Art of being Yourself.
Here’s an analogy…
Visualize a boat as you.
The part above water is the ‘you’ influenced by waves and other external factors (others’ perspectives), and the furnishings and fittings (your personas and your ego).
The part beneath is the ‘you’ (the inner self) that needs to be in good shape to keep the boat afloat and on course.
The part above the surface may look nice and shiny to the outside world, but if the part beneath the surface is in disrepair you risk sinking or falling apart at sea.
Some of this is about being in balance and the more balanced you feel, the freer you are to sail through life.
Care About Me, You, and the Universe
For a strong connection to self, start with giving. Cut yourself some slack first. Be nice to you, give yourself a gift, a reward. You’ve heard that before, right? And, then extend this to the outer nature. What you give out, you get in return multiplied. You’ve got it.
To attain inner peace you must actually give …Peace Pilgrim
Balance the giving to yourself with the giving of yourself to others for inner peace.
Go Outdoors, Get some Sunshine — be Part of Nature
The more you get away from the artificial and soak up the negative air ions and sunshine that nature offers, the better your mood and health will be.
Whenever I have found myself stuck in the ways I relate to things, I return to nature. It is my principal teacher, and I try to open my whole being to what it has to say. ~ Wynn Bullock
Walk, jog, or play with your dog in the park. Walk along the beach and notice the different shells and crabs. Go camping, hiking, kayaking, paddling, biking, or do some other outdoor activity. Maybe just sit.
Key: Balance the amount of time you spend indoors with time spent in nature to foster peace and happiness.
Nourish Your Mind, Body, and Soul
‘Nose’ means to detect, search, suss out, sniff, or pry. Stop, look, and notice patterns and possibilities. Explore. Enquire. Appreciate your nature within and the nature around you. This is all about self-improvement through opening yourself to possibilities for a naturally passionate life.
You can use all your senses in this way. Some examples:
- Taste This might mean a new cuisine.
- Touch Make sand castles in the sand, swim or paddle in natural waterways.
- Sound Listen to nature — the birds chirping and chattering, the sound of a babbling brook or flowing water over rocks, or the ocean pounding against the shore.
- Smell Inhale the scent of wildflowers or daisies in the garden. Experience the aroma of fertile earth, the beach or the bush, or the coolness of air after a storm.
- Sight Observe the magic of sunset, sunrise, or rainbows; the moon shining across a bay or a field; the many shades of green and brown in the forest, woodland, or bushland. Notice the enormous diversity of colour, texture, and shape in nature.
Key: Get a hobby or pastime that speaks heaps about your inner nature.
Notice the messages from your Intuition
This will arise more when your mind is still, as in the meditative state or with other activities that get you into the flow. Sometimes even when having a shower, ideas pop into my head. It’s a simple matter of allowing space for this type of thinking.
Key: There’s more to nature than logic.
Be Enlighten by your experiences
Find a hobby or pastime to enlighten yourself. Exercise and express your mind. Expand your horizons. Set yourself challenges. Most of all, make sure you enjoy it. Having a passion is the spark of life.
The aim is to open your inner Self to the magic of the world around you.
Be creative. Maybe craft something new from the old. Or, search Wikipedia for info on three things you observed in nature while you were outdoors.
Key 5: Make time to have fun and seek to ‘stretch’ your mind, body, and soul for enlightenment.
Be curious Rather Than Fearful
Show courage over a fear of the unknown. It is more than positive self-esteem. It may mean taking a leap of faith and changing your current trajectory.
Cultivate an attitude of feeling safe and behaviour of self-confidence. Try imagining yourself facing your ‘lion’ and the lion bowing down to honour you.
Key: Put your fear into perspective. Fear is often one’s biggest stranglehold.
Take Time to be you within nature
Allow time to remove old attitudes and instilled behaviours and develop the new in tune with your true nature.
Be persistent, but patient.
The aim is to make life easier and more fulfilling.
Daily habit examples:
- Keep a diary or journal for reflection
- Schedule in time to assess your ‘Self Wilding’
- Incorporate spending time in nature into your daily routine (here’s how)
Key: Balance action with reflection.
C O N N E C T is the acronym to remember
Each of the above starts with a letter that together spells the key message of this article — CONNECT. Realize everything is connected and that we are not machines. We are part of life on this planet and by nature, we are connected.
Finally, always remember… to C O N N E C T:
- C for care,
- O for outdoors,
- N for nose,
- N for nurture,
- E for enjoy,
- C for courage, and
- T for taking the time.
- Jung, C. G. (1947). On the Nature of the Psyche. London: Ark Paperbacks.
- Jung, C. G. (1958). The undiscovered self. New York: New American Library.