A great while all my mornings started with the diving into the sea of awkwardness and uncertainty.
My day began with the thought what dress to choose and what dish to make for the lunch to be approved by my co-workers. My wardrobe was full of bright skirts with funny prints, but I took the classic shirt my manager would like. I cooked macaroni and cheese, but had lunch when there was no one in the kitchen, alone, under cover.
I put myself out of the way just to impress others, to sound like them, to become the part of their band, to meet their expectations.
What was the purpose of my pain? To please someone? To get compliments? Possibly.
But the main reason was the fear of being unappreciated.
It was my nightmare, so to stop going through it over and over I terminated to do what I liked and just started to guess what my co-workers and mates would like me to do. It was tedious, but I couldn’t escape from this trap. Until one day.
The day I asked myself “Is it a life I was dreaming about?” and received an honest answer “No.” I didn’t actually live my life. I was mocking the other ones and didn’t even give the real me a try.
Certainly, I didn’t start acting according to my real preferences at once.
But the next morning my usual first thought got a competitor. It was immature, but a brave soldier that had pitched his tent in my life feeling area, and asked me «What do you say about the purple pants you bought last month? »
That was it. My breakthrough.
That was when I started to live my life. The life full of fun and sincerity.
When I put clothes I like on, and had my macaroni and cheese with my co-workers in the kitchen, making myself feel light, I realized, everyone I was expecting appreciation from was just as non-confident as me. When I let myself act naturally, all of a sudden, people switched to incertitude. As a matter of fact, they all were the hostages of public opinion. Just like me. They need supporting, encouraging and acceptance. We all need these things.
When I expressed my real thoughts, I found out others thought the same way. Doubts prevent them speaking honestly. Though, they want and need to be heard. We all need to be heard.
When I stopped hiding from people and started to tell them about my hobbies, about my spare time, I realized, others did the same things. They did all the trite stuff I did. Our lives aren’t boring (as I used to think about mine). Actually, they are manifold. Mine too. I have to share. We all have to share.
There is a happier way to take
We have much more in common than we are used to thinking.
Worries. Values. Ideas. Passions. Dreams.
To notice it, you have to accept yourself.
To accept yourself, you have to notice it.
A maze. But you could find a way out.
Instead of reproaching yourself love yourself.
Instead of criticizing others open your mind.
Instead of sheltering make connections.
Instead of mocking others live your life.
It would seem, these are evident truths. If you state them, anyone responds “Sure thing!”, “Exactly”, “Clearly!”, but keeps everything as it was.
Thus, I will proclaim these obvious truths again and again, with the hope in my heart that someday one more person will wake up and feel the inner strength to practice them.
With a hope that every day one more person will join this movement. The movement to the life full of happy faces, satisfaction, and confidence. The life free of hesitations and regrets, but with the place for natural choices and healthy thoughts.
Just take the step and discover the truth.
I’m happy I’ve taken it.
It will be glorious.
Kate Maurice is a freelance copywriter, the creator of the online project http://justwritemypaper.com/, who is interested in educational problems in modern society and self-improvement techniques. Kate is a typical introvert. You will probably find her in a cozy coffee house reading a book or watching people passing by outside.
Image courtesy of Aaron Burden.