We spend most of our youth trying to fit in, to find our place with others.
And if we feel we are perceived as different in some way, often that’s cause for concern. We don’t want to be different – we want to be the same as everyone else.
I know I spent a lot of my youth this way – trying to fit in with my peers. As I’ve mentioned before I always felt a little bit different, and this lead me to think that there was actually something wrong with me.
It wasn’t until I became an adult (and by this I mean, around age 29) that I actually realised that being different is ok. Not just ok, but good.
Instead of seeing all my strange quirks as imperfections or flaws, I started to see them as characteristics of who I am. These are the things that make me, me.
It helps to be surrounded by people who love you unconditionally. And if you find that you are not surrounded by these kinds of people, then you need to be that person to yourself.
There is nothing wrong with you. You are awesome just as you are – even (especially) if that means you are different from others. You only get one life on this planet, why would you want to spend it being like someone else?
I love this Oscar Wilde quote, even if it is over-used:
Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.
If you struggle to accept your differences, the sooner you can make peace with them, the sooner you will feel a million times better about yourself.
What are the things that make you different from others?
Which of these things do you already celebrate? Why?
Which of these are you unhappy about? How can you change your perspective about them?
Pick a person you admire. List all the things that make them different, and write about why you admire these things about them.
Note: this post was originally part of a series of 30 life lessons and journal prompts for my 30th birthday. You can access the rest of the lessons and prompts here.