Fit In or Stand Out?
I used to think it started in elementary and ended after high school, but what I realized today is that many adults still struggle to know who they are to try to fit in. Maybe it’s through what they wear, what they watch on TV, who they vote for, where they hang out, if they drink or not, or what their kids do. What if you really knew who you were and what you liked? What if you wore bright blue, orange, or yellow rather than wearing black 80% of the time? What if you spoke up if you didn’t agree with what was being said? What if, instead of nodding with a fake smile, you spoke your truth so your belly didn’t hurt at night?
You see, I believe more each day we’re NOT meant to fit in. We’re meant to be different from each other, from what’s expected, from what’s average, from what’s common. Do you like to look, talk, act and be the same as others? Have you traveled the world, seen different cultures, had different experiences, and met people with different values?
I once met a woman who told me she would only allow her kids to hang out with two-parent Christian families so they wouldn’t have any bad influences in their life. Half of me wanted to laugh, (wow, that is going to take a ton of energy to control your kid’s every move). What if one of those people got divorced, changed, or did something she didn’t approve of? Would she walk away? The other part of me wanted to cry. It was as though she missed the whole point of Jesus; he never hung out with the perfect people. How can you let your light shine in a bright room?
I was listening to some music this weekend and the song said “the more cracks in you, the more spaces for light to shine through all the broken pieces.” You see, when I was very young I realized I didn’t fit in, and I’m not like all the other people. I didn’t grow up with two parents, we didn’t have extra money, and most of my clothes were hand-me-downs. It took me 30+ years to realize that I’m happy that I don’t fit in, and I’m okay if not everyone likes me. I’m sorry I don’t know movie star or designer names but I’m okay being me: a little goofy, very flawed but hoping every day to make a difference by being okay being me. Who will you be today?
Are you trying to fit in or stand out?
How do you fit in?
When did you realize it’s okay and maybe even good to stand out?
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