Don’t be yourself, be yourselves

I have a lot of ongoing conversations, with Frank, with myself, with my Muse, God, the Universe, as well as a whole bunch of other people. I also dream a lot, in a way that it doesn’t make any sense but somehow it all comes together later down the road. I’m doing my best to capture my dreams in writing; sometimes they’re so good I just bask in the thoughts or images until I lose them altogether.

People who see me, and don’t see through me, know that I’m a bit flower-power, and I’m an all-round dreamy optimist, despite my super-practical and rational approach. However, some people find that a bit too much to take, and most of the times, they try and put me in one box or another, as it seems impossible to occupy more than the box you’ve been assigned to.

I’ve noticed that people react strangely when we bring our selves to the table. I mean, you either have to be professional Debby or whinny Laura or badass Jeannie or expert Henriette. However, it’s a hard pill to swallow if you’re a subject matter expert, collecting yoga pants and inspirational candles, meat-lover, but against animal cruelty type of person. These things don’t seem to add up, so we only acknowledge bits of them, depending on the lens we have at hand.

When did it become mandatory to fit some standards, and why has it become so challenging to see people in their wholeness? When did norms become the norm? When did we build so many norms around how and what we should be/ behave/ consume etc and why is it hard to digest people with their everything?

It’s a bit of a weird situation as we fail to realise we take our professional selves home and we bring our personal selves to work. There’s no separation between the two, as hard as we try to make one. When we choose to see people through the one lens, I feel we unknowingly and yet somewhat willingly give up something, which is a real shame.

I’m no less guilty of trying to conform. I recently attended a job interview in which I tried to fit in or, better said, tried not to stand out. So, I dressed down, wearing a casual office attire in neutral colours, and I remember being really nervous and a bit agitated. You see, it’s quite challenging to sit still when you want to move, and I’m not talking about physical movement necessarily. The funny thing is, one of the other persons attending the meeting showed up with what seemed to be their fully colourful self, and I felt a twinge of envy as I fell short of showing up with my fully colourful self too. After this experience, I decided that, in the long run, I lose more by not being my flower-power colourful unicorn self.

Showing up with ourselves is best, and it leads to less confusion and more congruence within, as difficult as it may seem at first 😊