It's time to change, trying to change.
I keep a list in my head called “must work on this”. Sometimes I even sit at a window with a leather bound journal and I write down an actual list of all the things I need to get better at.
This list is like an unravelling Egyptian scroll.
Next time, I like to tell myself, I will be more outgoing at parties. I won’t eat chocolate before bed. I’ll let go sooner of the people I should AND I’ll keep my room clean.
Next time, I’ll be better.
I’m driven. I like to look at myself and ask: where can you grow? You don’t need to tell me to go to the gym. You don’t need to tell me to work at my career. I have ideas, plans and visions. I could tell you 10 hundred ideas right this second. Fashion range? I’m in. New book? In. Documentary. Let’s do it!
Yet, somewhere in pursuit of growth, strand by strand like a fussy child eating spaghetti, I’ve become very good at dissecting all my shortcomings. And I’ve put a lot of pressure on myself to be…everything.
Life isn’t a game you win by working your way to the top. There are no bonus points for being “perfect”. There is you. And there is life. And there is the unique combination of you and life together. There are also things about ourselves we can not change.
Sadly, many of us go through life trying to change so much about ourselves that we miss out on the all the unique ME Goodness we got given. We talk ourselves down. We focus on faults. And we make decisions which undermine our worth.
We fight an endless inner battle: be better, or someone else. For what? And why?
The human race is bad at acceptance. We want to be it all. Have it all. Do it all. We don’t like hearing that we have limits and if someone tells us we have some we are slow to accept them.
Acceptance is a sign of maturity. Acceptance comes from knowing your race to run; your strengths and your weaknesses. And working it. Acceptance leads to rest. Rest lies in God. Rest lies in surrendering the hamster wheel of life. You’re never going to be perfect and you’re never going to get it all done. You weren’t supposed to.
It’s time to change trying to change, smile and give to the world whatever it is you got.
Here are some things about myself that I have decided, with resolve, that I will accept.
I see life in HD. I see pain and joy as if through a magnifying glass. I find this hard to accept because it feels like life is easier without this “gift”. But I can’t change this, it makes me me, and it makes me able to write with depth and conviction.
Your temperament makes you you. If you were more emotional maybe you would struggle to manage in your corporate job. If you were less emotional, perhaps you would be a less caring teacher.
People think you’re crazy if you have a faith and it can be difficult to stand up for something. Because of what I believe, things like treating all people as valuable is a core value of mine. I’ve come to accept that I have non-negotiables and that’s ok.
What is non-negotiable for you? Is it generosity? Attending a place of worship? Volunteering? Kindness? Integrity? A lot of the time we feel like we need to change our values to fit into the world around us. This isn’t true. You, and what you value, are important.
I’m extroverted but I REALLY need me time
“Must be more extroverted” I used to tell myself. I’m good with people but better with smaller groups of close friends than big crowds.
Introverts often feel a lot of pressure to be the life of the party. Extroverts often feel like they are too loud and overbearing and should “tone down”. Neither one is good nor bad. The world needs us all.
My passions aren’t yours
I love writing. I like reading. I love to travel. Many of my friends are settling down and having babies. I’m not. I don’t want to (just yet) and I don’t have to explain this to anyone.
Nobody is made with the same sets of priorities. You don’t have to listen to society, or your family, or your culture. You have your dreams to follow. Do it your way- that’s just fine.
I’m single (for now)
For a short while, I thought there was something wrong with me because I wasn’t moving between countless relationships like a bored teenager trying on clothes. Then I realised nah- nothing is wrong and I like a lot about my life as it is.
Our relationship statuses can change at any moment, but it’s important to accept the stage we are in. Don’t let yourself feel less worthwhile because of a relationship status. Accept it. And make the most of it.
That’s my list. I wonder what is on yours? What are you struggling with accepting? What inner battles are you fighting instead of relaxing and enjoying who you are?
Accept yourself, pimples, cellulite and all. We need to feel at home in ourselves before we can feel at home in the world.
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