Monday, January 20, 2014

The Value of NOT Fitting In

I remember years ago how badly I wanted to "fit in,  it was my goal to have everyone like me, to have tons of friends and was willing to do almost anything to gain that acceptance. Unfortunately, for many years I had a hard time. Once I moved away from my home town into a new state, social acceptance from classmates and those around me was not something that I really had, and no matter how hard I tried, popularity never really happened for me. At that time in my life, the feeling of exclusion was devastating; we all want to gain some form of "popularity" in a sense, even when we are older; it's quite normal actually. However after years of being thought of as weird and growing up without always having that acceptance taught me a lot ...all of it was valuable, but the most valuable moment was when I got tired of pretending and just decided to be myself. Always trying to act a certain way in order to cater to the crowd I was around was exhausting and never felt right. I started reading books that helped me gain a true understanding of who I really was and why I was not always accepted. I was never someone who conformed, I had strong opinions and passions and felt the need to be honest and forthcoming about them ; I was a rebel of sorts and this trait often scared people. I have always been assertive and direct but have a heart of gold that many people never saw through my strong outer shell.

Along the way, trying to gain acceptance actually caused me to lose who I really was, and it wasn't until I "found" myself again that I really began to grow. I learned that I wasn't typical, I was not one of the Jones's; I never would be and that there was SO much more to life than fitting in. In fact, my life of NOT fitting in became the one I fell in love with; life truly began when I realized these things. I started to embrace who I was... for me... and it felt right; it felt good, it was natural and less stressful. I no longer worried about what people thought of me and realized that the people who came into my life and stuck were there because of who I really was, not for who I was pretending to be. My friendships from that day on... and even now, are genuine, they are real, everlasting and ironically I have more friends now than I can truly handle. I have shoulders to cry on, hands to hold and ears that will listen when I need them... I am the same for them.

If you can relate to what I have been saying and you are still trying to fit in, if you are still trying to figure out who it is you are supposed to be in order to gain that "honorary social acceptance" I encourage you to stop... find who YOU are again, THAT is who you should be. Get back in touch with the person you are inside, the person that makes YOU tick, and be proud of who that is. I promise you that you will attract the right kind of people.You will develop stronger, more meaningful relationships and your life will be SO much happier. When you LOVE you for YOU and not who people expect or want you to be, life does not stop... it thrives.

Love you all, thanks for reading
xoxo
~Shells~



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