The Four “P’s” of Everyday Life

Do you really know who you are? Have you discovered the real you or are you still simply being what you need to be or others want you to be? Have you taken the time to discover the real you that God created – the ‘inside’ you? And, in the process, have you also discovered ‘who you are in Christ’? The ‘who’ God created you to be changed from the inside out by an encounter with the living Jesus Christ. 

Most people have not taken the time or put in the effort to discover who they really are. Often because they are afraid of what they will find if they look inside. For some it is easier to just fit in (see yesterday’s blog – “Belonging or Fitting In”) and not rock the boat. Others are simply living life on the surface and really can’t be bothered to dig deeper and find meaning and purpose. They are “enjoying” the pleasures of life.

These people fall back on the “4 P’s” to hold things together…

1> Perfecting – people are trying to be the best they can be in the way that they live, work, and relate to others. They know what is expected and they perform well. Even when it comes to the Christian faith – they perform well.

2> Pleasing – People don’t want to upset others and so they work hard to please others. They do what is expected, show up when they should, live in such a way that people will like them. These are often “yes” people who have little to no depth to their lives.

3> Proving – People who are out to prove they are better than others, know more than others, have more possessions than others. Maybe they are still trying to prove something to a parent long dead or to the world which they don’t find very friendly.

4> Pretending – This is where people pretend to be having a good life, pretending to enjoy what they are doing and what they possess, and pretending to be happy and contented. 

But for people who want to fulfill God’s call on their life and reach their divine destiny, looking inside and discovering the ‘real you’ is an absolute necessity. Perfecting, pleasing, proving, and pretending is no longer cutting it. They want real life and not a plastic existence where no one really knows them. 

If you want to be ‘the real you’ and live with integrity… then adopt the following:

Boundaries: Learn to set, hold, and respect boundaries. The challenge here is letting go of being liked and the fear of disappointing people.

Reliability: Learn how to say what you mean and mean what you say. The challenge is not overcommitting and overpromising to please others or prove ourselves.

Accountability: Learning how to step up, be accountable, take responsibility, and issue meaningful apologies when we are wrong. The challenge is letting go of blame and staying out of shame.

Vault: Learning how to keep confidences, to recognize what is ours to share and what’s not. The challenge is to stop using gossip and oversharing as a way to hot wire connections.

Integrity: Learn how to practice your values even when it is uncomfortable and hard. The challenge is choosing courage over comfort in these moments.

Non-judgment: Learning how to give and receive help. The challenge is letting go of “helper” and “fixer” as our identity and the source of our self-worth.

Generosity: Learning how to set the boundaries that allow us to be generous in our assumptions about others. The challenge is being honest and clear with others about what’s okay and not okay. 

Then you will be living the life God intended, you will be expressing the real you, and you will have a healthy level of self-love and self-respect.