Looking back on my life, I’m not quite sure why I had always tried so hard to fit in with certain social groups, though I am very sure now why I never did. I tried to hang out with the preppy people but found them to be too shallow and cruel to others. I searched for my place in the party crowd, (middle-of-the-road’ers) I called them; but they were too much into drinking, smoking, and doing drugs– trying to fit in with their own people. I also tried to hang with the intellectuals but found some of them to be know-it-all’s who looked down on others for not being as smart as they were.
To fit in, in my estimation, means to be as a chameleon and blend in with your surroundings, to not make waves, to go with the crowd. I have NEVER been that kind of person. So what in the world made me think that fitting in was a good idea for me? I think it was more about seeking approval. I didn’t just want people to like ME, I cared more about them liking my ideas, I think, so that I would feel confident in my own creativity. I guess in some ways, I still do.
As authors, really, we all do. We come up with an idea, write it down, clean it up as best we can, and put it out there for the whole world to read and judge with their own discernment. And just like in high school, we want to be popular and have everyone love our ideas (i.e. – buy our books and rave about them); but the older I get, the more I realize that I don’t care as much about the opinion of others to measure my merit as I once did. I know I still have a lot of learning to do, but that’s with everything. In my opinion, if I’m not learning, I’m dying.
So now that I am nearing 40, growing as a creative in every aspect of the word, I’m okay with not fitting in. It’s okay if you don’t like my writing, my book titles, my songs, or even … me. I’ve realized I can’t please all the people all of the time, and actually; I never really wanted to. I simply wanted to please certain people at specific times in my life. Sometimes that didn’t work either.
Now, I write to ultimately cleanse my soul, to get my emotions down on paper, to make more room in my brain for creative thoughts, and to help the (small as it may be at times) percentage of people who DO want to hear what I have to say. Those who do believe there is some merit to my ideas. I want to surround myself with people who get high–from helping others become better, people who don’t have to put others down to feel better about themselves, and people who are willing to accept that we are all human and can learn from each other no matter how smart we think we already are. That’s now my kind of crowd!
I hope this post gives even one person who reads it a sense of peace and acceptance about their own personality and talents. Be the best YOU that you can be and accept your weaknesses as points to work on instead of flaws that hold you back from achieving what you desire. You are unique! Be a leader instead of someone who devotes their time to fitting-in!