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How often do you hear “just be yourself”? It’s tossed around so much, you’d think it’s easy, but the truth is, being yourself is actually one of the most difficult things you can do. It’s so much more than just knowing who you are and living that truth. Being yourself means discovering who you aren’t, you don’t want to be and removing that.

As kids, we felt free to just be. But as we grow up, we acquire expectations from our parents, teachers, friends, society and start to push ourselves into boxes to suit those expectations. We change, modify, or lose parts of ourselves because we’re afraid of rejection.

So when someone says, “just be yourself” it’s not that simple. It should be one of the easiest things to do but is truly the hardest thing to do. But here’s the thing about just being yourself – and this one a lot of people forget – it’s more than just being you. It’s about being CONFIDENT and COMPETENT as YOURSELF.

Both of those things start inside. When you know you’re really good at something – you’ve honed your competence – you’re confident as a result. Being the expert, the go-to person feels good. In order to be that person, though, you have to know exactly who you are, who you’re becoming and what you do best that serves others. Cause the thing is, it doesn’t matter what you’re great at if it doesn’t help anyone…

The true joy in life comes from using our genius to enhance someone else’s life – and doing that is where confidence comes from. Just “doing your thing” is more than just being you, it’s being really good at something that serves others and putting that out there again, and again.

Sharpen your skills, build your confidence and everything else follows that. Yes, be yourself – but do that in a way that serves to better the world.