How to reach your ideal self

What does it mean to be yourself? Does it mean living up to your potential or is there more to it? 

If you’re like most people, these are the questions you’ve pondered as you search for identity, confidence and fulfillment in life. When the answers you find fall short of the expectations you hold for yourself, you need to start asking the really important questions that lead you to understand how to become the best version of yourself. 

To nail down a strategy for self-improvement, you must uncover your essential “you-ness” the values, interests and passions that define who you are in life and the world. Once you understand yourself, you’re able to define a clear vision of your best self and map out your route to get there. 

What does it mean to become the best version of yourself?

Becoming the best version of yourself means getting back to your quintessential self. As straightforward as that sounds, it’s anything but: Authentic self-discovery takes courage and tenacity. To approach your essential self, you must turn away from distracting false beliefs that cloud or distort your self-perception. 

Like most of us, you’ve built at least part of your identity on others’ expectations. The process of internalizing others’ values was unconscious, and bringing it to consciousness is the essence of learning how to become the best version of yourself. By learning to recognize and let go of whatever limiting beliefs are keeping you from self-actualization, you’re able to push forward and find the person you really are. 

If you’re feeling anxious about self-improvement, remember: every person is completely unique. Someone else’s life path cannot be your benchmark of success, since they have different dreams, passions and skills. There is also no road map or ideal outcome in life, since everyone’s path is theirs and theirs alone. 

If you’re not where you’d like to be, have compassion for yourself. You’re at a crossroads, and that’s fine. Don’t compare yourself to others. 

Defining the best version of yourself

To begin defining your best self, have a conversation with yourself just like you’d have on a first date. Pretend that your ideal self is sitting there with you, and ask that person: What activities do you enjoy? Who do you enjoy being around? What impact do you want to make on the world? What is your happiest memory? Be sincere and honest in your answers. 

As you continue the conversation, pay attention to your feelings. If you notice “negative” emotions like anxiety or anger, you’re probably telling yourself subtle negative messages that obscure your conversation. Dig deeper into what’s driving the feeling. Are you afraid you’ll fail at finding yourself? Are you afraid of what you’ll find when you dig deep? As tempting as it is to feel inadequate, the truth is that each of us is fully complete just the way we are. It’s getting in touch with this essential self that will free you to become the best version of yourself. 

How to become the best version of yourself

Once you’ve identified the person you want to be, you can plan how to become the best version of yourself. Start with the end in mind your ideal self and take concrete steps to get there. 

Be willing to shed your old identity.

When you determine to find your ideal self, you’re essentially raising the bar for yourself and the people you know. Your “old self” will resist this due to feelings of insecurity and fear of the unknown. Resist the urge to cling to the familiar the identity that’s been holding you back and embrace a can-do attitude.

Tame your fears.

Fear is an insidious adversary that robs us of our courage and distracts us from the present moment. Taming your fears is possible, and is necessary to better yourself. When you feel anxious, identify what you’re afraid of and write it down. Then, write down an alternative explanation that’s less scary while still being realistic. Even if your feelings don’t change right away, your mind will register the rationale. In time, the process of fact-checking your fears becomes habitual, and you become less swayed by anxiety.

Tame your fears

setting reasonable goals

Prioritize outcomes.

Since understanding how to be the best version of yourself requires looking inward for wisdom, don’t try to find yourself by gathering tons of information. Let your ideal self set a goal. Pick something plain and achievable, like getting organized or reading more fiction. Making a measurable goal is one of the most effective ways to get out of your head and build confidence.

Set reasonable goals.
Prevent overwhelming yourself by setting small, measurable goals. If you’d like to lose 10 pounds and increase your income by 30%, break those down into smaller steps, like exercising for 20 minutes a day and enrolling in a business class. Each time you take a step toward your goal, you build self-confidence to become the best version of yourself.

Amplify your strengths.

As you learn how to be the best version of yourself, you’ll hit roadblocks of exhaustion where your current skill set is inadequate. Don’t get discouraged! Amplify your strengths so you remember what you’re bringing to the table. By staying positive, you’ll find creative solutions you’d miss if had remained bogged down in self-defeating thinking.

Manage yourself effectively.
Part of understanding how to be the best version of yourself is learning to be your own boss through effective self-management. Effective time management sets you free from stress, steers you toward your ideal self and relieves you of others’ expectations. To stay accountable and in control of your resources, check in on your progress monthly, quarterly and yearly. Becoming your own best boss makes you a better resource for your team. 

managing yourself effectively

Become the best version of yourself now

Reach your highest potential today by utilizing Tony Robbins’ Limiting Beliefs free content series.