It’s often said, “Be true to yourself.” Easy to say. But, what is the “self”. It’s not an object. And, there are different notions of “self” floating around. Often you’ll see a distinction between the little “self” and the big “Self”. If I go back to India and the Vadas, I find that the word Atman corresponds to the big self, the Self with the capital “S”. This Atman is related to the Brahman (what may be called the Oversoul, or field of infinite potential actualizing as all that is).
But, for us, the self is the ego – that sense of being separate from those around us. That sense of separation, the self as ego, is most useful for survival in the worlds of society and nature. Yet, it can cause isolation and puzzlement about the meaning of our lives. The self-ego knows that it's existence is tentative and always at risk. This is hard. Hence, our need for transcendence beyond the little self to the Big self.