Being different doesn't get easier.

Being different takes courage. It is a risk. It means moving against the status quo, things are they are and resisting the “norm”.

And over time, the truth is, being different doesn’t get easier.

You just get better at managing what it means to stand out.

This is how and why resilience is so important in a world that constantly pressures us to fit in and conform to a norm that, ironically, doesn’t even actually exist. It’s a concept that takes place in minds but doesn’t actually exist in reality.

And this is good news! Because it doesn’t mean you’re weird or wrong or there’s something wrong with you. It simply means that those people are asleep to what’s actually happening.

Here’s what’s happening: each person is being their unique self (there are over 7.5 billion people on the planet right now and no two people alike, isn’t that CRAZY?!) but within cultural boundaries of what is considered, “good, right, appropriate, etc.” either by explicit laws or cultural rules that are followed.

(If you’ve been following me, you know I’ve been writing about this for the past ten years in all sort of ways. If you’re new to my writing, please check out my 300+ archived posts! There’s a lot of overlap because the same wisdom can be repeated lots of times in different ways.)

So here everyone is, walking around being both unique and “normal” in various ways at the same time.

So it begs the question: what exactly IS normal? And if no one is doing it, who actually IS?!

You see what I’m talking about here.

So being yourself automatically means you’re already different. There’s no such thing as normal or the same so different is just reality. But people who don’t get this keep thinking there’s a “right” and “wrong” way to be or act or live or whatever and heap all those expectations and assumptions into your lap.

And that’s the resistance we feel. That’s why it’s hard to be ourselves, if we’re even clear on what that actually means. (That’s what I help people do, btw)

That resistance shows up in all sorts of ways, time after time, day after day. Messages coming from all angles that we are not fitting other peoples’ expectations.

It’s not like we can broadcast out what we’re doing and have everyone hear it once and for all. So it keeps coming, like waves on the shore. Endlessly. Comments. Critiques. Questions.

You know what I’m talking about.

And that’s why being different doesn’t get easier. Because it never stops, that resistance. But what we do is become more aware of it being an endless experience. And we stop expecting it to stop. We stop expecting it to be easier.

We basically start managing our response to it. We decide to change how it affects us. We shift our mindset to help us negotiate the process of being ourselves in a world full of people who are still trying to figure it out and get the courage to do it themselves.

We eat better. We sleep more. We exercise. We journal. We meditate. We take vitamins. We read books.

We find as many ways as possible to manage the impact of trying to be different in a world full of SAMENESS that is really difference in disguise. Or disillusioned sameness.

I’ll leave this deep thought trajectory right here and just come back to reassure you that YOU ARE PERFECT as you are. DIFFERENT is cool. BE YOURSELF and find a new way today to manage how people resist your brilliance because it doesn’t get easier. It’s on you to build the muscle that makes it better, one day at a time.

Ask For What You Need

I've experienced many people who live their lives sort of half-assed. They spend alot of time walking around making life really comfortable for other people and neglecting some basic needs (or some amazing extras like unexpected days off, free products, extra hugs, etc.) Want to know one of those people? You're reading about one.

Yep! I am continously seeing the ways I sell my own self short. In the past few weeks, I have done something to change it.

What prompted the change?

Here's what I noticed was happening:

  • I was tired a lot

  • I felt frustrated and resentful that other people seemed to live so care-free, how do they DARE ask for what they want and need? "Harumph! Check out so-and-so asking for ________. Where does he/she/ze get the nerve?"

  • My skin wasn't clearing up

  • I felt like my eyes were going to bug out of my head at all times (this is most likely an adrenal issue)

  • I was Dillan the Grouch way too often.

How can I expect my clients to Savor Their Existence(s) when I'm not walking my own darn talk?

The truth is, when you're out on the edge of doing something really scary and awesome (like I've been doing these past few years) you will have moments of greatness and moments of not-such-greatness. Tapping into your own self-worth and actually doing things that magnify it to yourself and others takes a whole lot of courage and determination. Consistently challenging yourself to be the best version of You takes time, it takes introspection and it takes patience.

Asking For What I Need is one of my best lessons from the past few years. I realized I wasn't doing anyone, least of all me, any favors by making life more comfortable for other people. It was only short-changing my own needs and that is not what we were put on this planet to accomplish. If I want to live a charmed life full of joy, abundance and peace--I need to start with small steps on a daily basis. It begins with asking for what I need each moment of each day. Every relationship, every interaction, every moment when I'm sitting with myself---I need to be aware of and articulate what it is I need in that moment.

Sometimes, people won't be able to deliver. This is when I practice something called detachment (practice makes perfect, right?). I can ask for what I need, and release the expectation that someone or something will provide for that need. But the ASKING is the point. Anything that happens after that is easier to accept because I did my part.

It's the asking that is self-empowerment.

It's the asking that is self-love.

It's the asking that says, "hey, I deserve to have a life that feels comfortable and manageable so I can go out there and do incredible work."

That work can look very different but the basic need is the same: we need to feel like we can do it.

Work can be:

  • a job

  • school

  • being a partner/lover/friend

  • parenting

What do you need right now to feel like you can do the work you are doing?

Now, go ask for it.