“Been thinking about authenticity and about how we have been done a great disservice by being taught that [what] we are to be authentic to is our feelings, as opposed to our values.”
Chekhov advised, "If you want to work on your art, work on your life." That's another way of saying that in order to have self-expression, we must first have a self to express.
I would tell 12 year old me:
Profound struggle doesn’t have to be an inevitable and everlasting part of your life; more joy and peace than you have yet experienced or imagined is possible.
"We need regular rituals that compel us to turn & face the difficulties, the failures, the woe, the underside of things; spaces where we're obliged to confront & work through what we might otherwise avoid. Our lives and health would improve vastly if we did such things."
— James Davies