Dr. Seuss said it best, " Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You." Individuality and self truth are concepts that I absolutely have strong feelings about. We are simultaneously quite different yet similar. We all want love, but receive it differently. We want to feel wanted but we all go about expressing or living this truth differently. We all want to be happy but that means something different for every person and culture.
On a more individual level, we all have attributes and interests that make us unique. Whether it's how we make others laugh, our outlook on others behavior, special topics of interest like comics, anime, star wars, animals, law, insects or whatever, we are all unique. When you are able to be around people who embrace that uniqueness, it's a beautiful experience. Some of us are fortunate to find those people early, and others bloom into adulthood hoping to just at least 1 friend that really understands them. Nonetheless, deciding to live your life according to who you are, or who you decide to be, is a challenge sometimes. Why?
1. People may get offended
You are not in control of what other people think or feel, but with good intentions, it's loving for us to not offend, make sure we nurture, or make others feel comfortable. Unfortunately this isn't always attainable because if someone ask you your honest opinion, and it goes against what they want to hear, there might be temporary friction. One of the greatest lessons I've learned in the last year is learning not to take things personally. Every one comes in your life and into a conversation with their own mess and understanding of the world. Sometimes what you say or do can unknowingly make them uncomfortable, without intention of doing so.
2. The world outside of you reacts to what you represent, whether negatively or positively.
When it comes to a certain aspect of individuality like dress or hair, we know that how you look shapes the opportunities you get or even how people perceive you. There are going to be people that accept or judge based on you decide to be, both in appearance and in demeanor. Just remember that you can't please everyone.
3. When you're not in tune with yourself, it's easy to look to labels to fulfill who you think you should be.
As a woman, we have so many pressures and images suggesting how we "should" be.
Should you be trendy? be glamorous? be eclectic? be a "feminist"? be serially liberated? be a "lady"? be ambitious? be subtle? be free spirited? be married? be attached? be soft? be chiseled? There's so many ideas and so many labels that it could be easy for someone who's not secure in themselves to get confused and feel pressured to be a certain way.
The reality is you can be whoever you want to be, as long as you are happy, comfortable and are thriving. Don't feel pressure to fulfill the fantasy that seems fun on TV, in a magazine or on social media.
No one can really know you better than you, but the truth is learning who you are and creating who you want to be is a great accomplishment. Embrace who you are, and learn to not take others judgements of you personally.
Written by: Tiffany W.