No, I will not change myself for everyone. There is nothing more unfortunate than losing my authentic self in an effort to please everyone that comes my way.
To some, my kindness will come across as being fake. To some, my affection will across as being needy. To some, my friendliness will come across as being flirtatious. To some, my quietness will come across as being rude. To some, my excitement will come across as being boastful. So I stopped. I stopped trying to be understood by those who were committed to misunderstanding me. I also recognize, with a heavy heart, that I was not meant to be embraced by everyone, accepted by everyone,and loved by everyone. Life just doesn’t work that way.
For years, I felt like I was pulling my body around like a carcass with no spirit or identity. I felt the pain of deserting my soul, as I wasn’t living authentically in an effort to please others. I finally gained strength and wisdom after life pushed me in the driver’s seat. In silence and solitude, it dawned on me that I was standing in my own way. I was in control of how I perceived others and situations. I had the power to turn my life around. I had to start using all that was already in me to stop feeling like I needed to change to be loved and accepted. I slowly started unfolding.
Through my unfolding, I recognized that people judged and criticized me, not out of hate but because of their mindset — their past, their insecurities, their values, and perceptions. I learned that I was given the power to choose to stay in relationships where constant judgement and criticism were prevalent or to walk away for my own sanity. I practiced using my power to choose.
Through my unfolding, I recognized that some people were cold because of the warmth they did not receive in life, and if these broken souls judged me, it came from a place of unresolved hurt. I did not need to take their judgement personally. I learned to lean in rather than step out to criticize myself. I practiced giving love.
Through my unfolding, I recognized that I had to stop mining for similar likes and dislikes with others in an effort to feel aligned and accepted — it felt debilitating to drag myself through relationships which didn’t emerge naturally. I recognized that I needed to stop perfecting myself to feel perfect in someone else’s world. I practiced being independent.
Through my unfolding, I recognized that people misunderstood me based on how little they knew of me. To some, I only gave pieces of myself. And to some, I gave the deepest corners of my heart. If those I gave pieces of myself to judged me, I learned not to take it personally, as they knew me prematurely. If I chose not to let them in, I had to take ownership. I practiced taking accountability.
Through my unfolding, I recognized that I will be judged, criticized and misunderstood regardless of all the dissecting and piecing I do on my part to understand others. This is where I practiced ignorance.