What Makes Me Weird

Image: Pinterest

Image: Pinterest

 

I prefer being alone than with a large group of people.

I hate clothes shopping.

The smell of tuna makes me feel ill.

These are just three things about me that make me weird- there are many more, but I won’t bore you.

For many years, I have conformed and tried to “fit in” with certain groups of people while at the same time have been preaching to my children the importance of celebrating diversity and individuality.

We want our children to leave their unique footprints in the world rather than following the crowd and conforming to certain expectations, but we also want our children to be seen as normal and not “weird”- we want them to have healthy friendships and not endure bullying from others for being a little bit different.

How many of us practice what we preach? How often have you changed your behaviour or allowed others to dictate how you live in order to “fit in” and feel accepted?

When I was younger, I remember going out with a group of friends who were quite “girly” and loved to dress up and wear make up so I did the same- dressed myself up in clothes I would normally never wear just to be able to fit in. We spent the afternoon shopping and trying on different outfits. I remember looking at myself in the mirror and feeling physically ill because I was acting like a complete fraud- I did not feel comfortable or happy, and was bored! I wanted to go home and put on some comfy clothes and listen to music in my bedroom, alone.

The sad fact is, this sort of behaviour is not just limited to teenage girls, but also adults of all ages.

Conformity happens in the workplace, in local communities, and in the public eye.

The cost of conformity is not only losing your sense of identity, but losing time. Some people spend years living a life that is expected of them, and then suddenly wake up to realise that they have wasted their lives.

Conformity can also lead to busyness and living a hectic lifestyle. Here are 3 ways that hiding your “weirdness” and conforming could be making you busy:

1. You have expectations to fulfil: Maybe extra meetings you need to attend at work, activities you need to undertake (a weekly appointment at the beauty salon?) or an obligation you need to fulfil (baking for the school cake stall) in order to meet the expectations of others.

2. You have standards you need to live by: The most coveted home in the neighbourhood, the coolest car, the glitziest parties or the full social calendar. Living by such standards takes time and money.

3. You are busy hiding who you really are: For some people, it takes a lot of time and effort to hide who they really are from the rest of the world. Time that could be spent living a more honest and fulfilling life if only there wasn’t a need or desire to conform.

By identifying what you are currently doing in your life due to conformity, you can make the decision to change your behaviour and not only be more true to yourself, but also gain more time. You don’t have to start breaking the law or dyeing your hair pink, but making small, subtle changes can create a positive ripple effect. It could be learning to say no, or deciding that something does not “feel” right to you, therefore it isn’t worth pursuing. Or perhaps all you need is to change your perception of something about yourself- see a weakness as an actual strength!

Judy Garland once said “Always be a first rate version of yourself and not a second rate version of someone else.”

Let’s all leave an individual footprint behind!

If you are feeling game enough, I’d love for you to share 3 things that make you “weird” or something you have always wanted to do but have been too afraid because it isn’t the “norm” for someone like you!

 

If you have the time…

I have written three guest posts in the past fortnight that I would love for you to read:

Sharon from Rediscovered Families(presence and awareness for strong family connection) was kind enough to invite me to share a story as part of the “Choosing To Connect” series, No Substitute For Time. Thanks Sharon!

I also did a guest post Finding The Time for The Mindset Effect (the power in the way we think)- thanks Ali!

Many of you have found me via Miss Minimalist, but for those who didn’t, here’s a link to a profile I wrote for her. Enjoy!

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9 Comments

  1. Brilliant article! I can completely relate. In fact, I thought you were describing me in the title.
    I am only now realising (in my mid-40’s), it’s o.k not to like doing certain things. It’s o.k. to want and need time to myself. I finally have the confidence to simply say “No thanks. That’s just not my thing!”.
    Once you start learning this, you begin to weed out the things (& people) that have a negative impact on you. You become more choosy as to how you spend your precious time and energy…and that’s o.k. You wouldn’t want anyone else to not be enjoying themselves, or not feel comfortable etc…give yourself the same grace.
    Love your blog!

    Reply
    • Thanks Dani, and you make a great point about not wanting anyone else to not be enjoying themselves or not feel comfortable. I’m so glad you have made this realisation- enjoy saying no!
      Natalie

      Reply
  2. The three things that make me weird are I am a Vegan, I love to garden especially when I can get my hands dirty, I love going to the farmers market, and last but, not least I have 2 cats, a rabbit, and a daughter.

    Reply
  3. My first is similar to you: I am an introvert and need quite a lot of down time! Secondly: I subscribe to, read, and make notes from numerous simplicity blogs, and we have one ourselves! I know that is not weird among your readers, but I always forget that other people don’t know what I’m talking about and haven’t heard of the blogs I mention! Third: We don’t fly or value the idea of holidays abroad, which is sometimes a very controversial topic to discuss.

    Reply

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