To Thine Own Self Be Kind
About six months ago, I quit my job and was feeling rather lost. I knew I had made the right decision, and yet I didn’t know what that decision really meant for my future. Two weeks into my unemployment, I went to see Elizabeth Gilbert, author of the wildly successful memoir, Eat, Pray, Love, give a speech in Chicago. I was hoping that she might provide me with some inspiration to navigate my own uncharted waters.
I’m happy to say that Ms. Gilbert didn’t disappoint. She was just as gracious and insightful and delightfully self-deprecating as I hoped she might be. Amongst the many interesting things she said, there was one that particularly struck me.
When asked by an audience member if she had any advice to offer other women on their own journeys of exploration, she said that she liked William Shakespeare’s line
“To thine own self be true.”
However, she said that she would also add:
“To thine own self be kind.”
We are so quick to beat ourselves up for our mistakes and so reluctant to give ourselves credit for our efforts. I’m trying to change my life for the better. Go me.
Rebecca Grazulis is a Chicagoan, a vegetarian (yes, you can be both), a wanna-be yogi and a former high school English teacher in a period of career exploration. To contact the author, you can e-mail her or visit her website.