Make sure to read the entire article to get your Transformational Take Away and multimedia experience at the bottom 🙂
I’ve heard an exchange like this about a million, bazillion times (and if English isn’t your first language that means A LOT).
I hear a woman complaining about her curly hair and how she hates it… wishing it were straight, to which the other ladies with straight hair say “I’d give anything to have curly hair like yours.” After all isn’t that’s why they created perms and straightening rods?
I don’t have hair, so I can’t totally relate to the hair issue (that’s one reason I wear hats), but how much of the time do you wish you were more like others… probably because you want to feel safe and want to fit in?
But what if what makes you different is exactly the thing that makes you beautiful, and the thing that this world needs?
I don’t like broccoli. That’s something I know about myself and even though I know how healthy it is for my body, I just can’t get myself to eat it. Do you judge me because I don’t eat broccoli?
I could be like my grandmother who even though she didn’t like coffee, forced herself to like it so she could “fit in” with their friends when they would go to the cafe, but I choose to be who I am.
The world wants you to conform… to be like everyone else.
It’s much easier to rule over and control people that way, and I’m guessing you’d rather not give someone power like that over your life, right?
Maybe you want to conform so you don’t stand out and not risk having people judge or reject you.
I understand. It can be scary to think others may not like or accept you if you don’t conform.
But that is a broken strategy, because whoever you pretend to BE, some people in the world won’t like you. So you might as well BE UNIQUELY YOU.
And when you do, the people who really love and care for you will show their true colors and your life will be full of people you love, and people who love you.
“I’d rather be hated for you I am, than loved for who I am not.” – Kurt Cobain
Regardless of your reason, this world would be a very boring place if everyone were vanilla ice cream. Imagine living in a world with only vanilla ice cream.
I like me some Chunky Monkey, Rocky Road, Mint Chocolate Chip, or Cookies and Cream (to name a few) and I’m guessing you like more than vanilla too.
My wood shop teacher used to say “I’m glad we are all different, or else everyone else would want my wife.” I don’t know why that have stuck with me, probably since it made me laugh at the time and still brings a smile to my face, but there’s a lot of wisdom in that saying.
So if you are trying to BE like everyone else, when are you going to stop?
It takes a lot of effort to pretend, and then it’s accompanies by fear and worry that someone will find out you aren’t who you are pretending to be, and being found out after pretending is much worse that just being unashamedly who you really are.
It takes a lot less effort to just BE YOU.
Imagine if Kurt Cobain tried to fit in?
We wouldn’t have the music from Nirvana. We wouldn’t have a whole genre of music called grudge inspired by bands like Nirvana (who for a brief moment was the biggest band in the world) that changed a generation. We wouldn’t have Dave Grohl… one of my favorite people and musicians of all time who went on to create the Foo Fighters (more on that later).
Imagine if you keep trying to fit in?
What will it cost you to keep pretending?
What will the world be missing out on because you aren’t shining your light and bringing the things that only you can provide to the rest of us?
I for one would rather not know.
And some great advice to end of from someone who wasn’t afraid to be unique:
“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” – Oscar Wilde
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Transformational Take Away:
- Pick something about yourself that is unique, that maybe you are a little embarrassed about.
- Pull out a piece of paper and a pen (yes, I know it’s old school) and journal for 5 minutes about why you are embarrassed and why that thing makes you unique and special.
- Spend this next week saying to yourself 10 times each day “I like __ because it makes me unique. I love myself, and others love me just the way I am.”
When you finish that exercise, head on over to: https://jasonmefford.com/jammingwithjason250/ and listen to “Let Your Freak Flag Fly” (or down below) where I talk a lot more about ice cream and how what makes you unique and different is exactly the reason why people love you.
And for those of you who are Nirvana fans, there’s a little surprise at the end which is the song that took them to the top so fast and moved a whole generation of young adults. Don’t believe me? The video has over 1.4 BILLION views.