Do You, Be a Star and Shine
Happy Summer! With the celebration of the Solstice a couple of days ago, we are officially summering in the northern hemisphere. I love this time of year, perhaps because I have so many friends with birthdays in June, July, and August and my own is just a month and a couple of days away. How do you feel about the seasons? How many do you have where you live? I'm used to four distinct changes during the year and I enjoy the variety and variability. What about you?
Monday's Seed brought up the idea of conforming or "being in alignment with":
"We think we want to 'fit in', be like everyone else. However, the people we admire and look up to, often stand out."
Do you ever feel like you're hiding your true self? Are you afraid you might get noticed? We all have different personalities. Some of us are more outgoing while others are quieter. Neither one is right or wrong and we all have our level of comfort around expressing ourselves, but did you ever get the message that you were "too much" or that you should "take it down a notch"? Girls often experience that when growing up -- I know I did. I remember once laughing it up with my third grade friends and dancing in the hall on the way to the cafeteria. I was reprimanded and told that I should quiet down. A couple years later, in the fifth grade, our French teacher asked if we could think of any idiomatic expressions in English. She was looking for phrases like, "hold your tongue" or "raining cats and dogs". A popular tv commercial at the time featured the Playtex "living bra", so I suggested that as an American idiom. I was sent to the principal's office. After that, I spent a lot of time observing what was acceptable behaviour. I kept trying to adapt and fit in -- often unsuccessfully and much to my dismay. It's an interesting statistic that women suffer from autoimmune diseases twice as often or more than men. Yes, there is research that implicates chromosomes and hormones in these diagnoses, however I wonder and believe there's more to it than that.
Autoimmune means that the body attacks its own normal cells because it perceives them as foreign. My theory is that if we are told enough times and take in the idea that we are not "right" and that we can't be our true selves, we could lose our sense of identity and turn against ourselves. You might think that sounds crazy and I respect your opinion, but it's one of those things that makes me go, "hmmmmmm". Whether or not it actually makes us sick, it can definitely make us feel less than and it's exhausting. Plus, it means that we aren't sharing our talents and gifts with the world. Think about someone you admire ... it could be someone famous like Oprah, Paul McCartney, Eleanor Roosevelt , Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Frida Kahlo, or Rosa Parks. What if any of them had squelched their life force?!? Maybe you looked up to a teacher or a family member. Nobody who has had a positive influence in the world, yours or the world at large, tried to be small and "fit in". They might have at one time, but in the end they had to be themselves and that usually meant "standing out". When someone tells another person that they need to "put a lid on it" or not "call attention to themselves", it's probably because someone told them to reign it in. They may have even been told that they should be more like [fill-in-the-blank]. I've always loved the quote by Oscar Wilde: "Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." The next time you find yourself trying to hide in the crowd, stop and question the what and the why of your actions. Whose voice are you hearing in your head? How is it holding you back? What could you be offering up instead of covering over? I know you have so much to contribute and the world needs all of your gifts and strengths. Look in the mirror, say to yourself, "You got this!", throw that feather boa around your neck, step out and do your thing -- this is what I wish for you. Are you tired of editing and monitoring yourself? Would you like to explore your true self-expression? I can help with that. Send me an email and we can set up a complimentary Discovery Session! The world is waiting for you.
Sparkles and Love,