In my family going to college was not an option. I believed that by going to college- a good life was guaranteed and that success would naturally come. The truth is that I did not question the traditional path to success or happiness. The American dream after all is to dream big and believe anything is possible. Recently, Marie Forleo did a piece on dreaming big being soul crushing. Sometimes it seems we get caught up in trends believing that if we do not there is something wrong with us. And while some folks strive to be misfits many if not most of us want to fit in or be accepted.
So it is not unusual that I took the traditional path and went to college rather than start my own business as I once had envisioned in junior high. Once upon time you like me may have wondered about starting your own business. Starting your own business is often filled with messages -of self-sacrifice and tons of long hours--which could be discouraging to some. Yet, that was an old idea and while it may not be easy to start your own business- it is not as tough as we may have heard.
Looking back I can see how we are programmed to think in ways that prepare us to do as we are told rather than question, find and follow our own wisdom and path. It is almost like we want others to do the thinking for us after years of training to not think for ourselves. And it seems only natural then to behave like everyone else: robotically & mechanically.
When you don’t fit into that model you question yourself rather than question society, the organizational culture or group beliefs. I know I questioned myself and made myself wrong. I allowed my self-esteem to be tied to achievement. I know better than to subscribe to externals and yet when you don’t fit in-- it can be tempting to stray from our truth. Many people talk about our worth being based on who we are not what we do- and yet there is still plenty of emphasis just below the surface -on making something of yourself.
If I am going to make something of myself it better be based on things that hold true to my heart rather than comply with jargon, beliefs or trends that ultimately lead us further from our loving nature.
So while I may not be successful by traditional standards I am learning to be more gentle with myself and in turn more content. These days I am working part-time and using my time to truly discern or gain clarity on what I want moment to moment through walks in nature, writing and salsa dancing.
Sometimes I want immediate results a thing that is common these days in an era of instant results and gratification. And then I remember that patience is not only a virtue but truly loving and kind. While patience is not so easy --- there are no shortcuts. Would you want to rush through your favorite concert or ice cream sundae?
Here are the 3 things this misfit has learned:
1) Misfits are way more creative than the status quo world gives us credit for.
2) That loving myself comes first and everything else follows.
3) It is key is to be grounded in our pure raw essence so the many messages of prescribing to externals whether from family, society, culture, traditions and so on do not keep us subscribed to achievements and unfulfilling goals.
As I see it our very essence knows what it needs and is gracefully capable of attracting its desires trusting the highest good of all. This cannot be quantified by external scales. We can just feel the joy and abundance of those who are grounded in their essence.
So let us see what develops as I forge my own path. It is often easier to write and share once we have made it or achieved success but I am here as one who is not there but smiling anyway.
If you are a misfit or reject the status quo because you have a big heart share your thoughts. I honor the rebel in you whether you dream big or not.