It’s not always comfortable or easy to stand out from the rest of the world. Children learn early on that blending in is often easier because it can save you from unwanted confrontation, bullying or teasing, and that mindset can be hard to overcome. However, blending in with the crowd will not lead you to the most success or create the most satisfying life. The world needs your uniqueness and your individuality! And your life will never feel completely satisfying if you are pretending to be something you are not or less than what you actually are.
Think about the most famous and successful people you know. They became famous and successful because they were willing to work through their uncomfortable feelings and put their unique qualities out into the world to be recognized. If you are ready to find your own unique voice and let your individuality shine, here are some things I suggest you try:
1. Start small by showing yourself off to the world in ways that aren’t too uncomfortable for you. For example, if your talent is painting but you are afraid of showing your work, you could post your artwork anonymously online to help you ease into the process of dealing with positive and negative feedback. Another suggestion would be to start showing your artwork to people you do feel comfortable with, such as family and friends, and progress from there.
2. Share your opinions when appropriate. Your opinions show your individuality and your unique perspective. A great way to get comfortable being your true self is to speak up.
3. Focus on the positive. Make sure you are allowing yourself to enjoy compliments! Whenever you put yourself in the public eye, you will have to deal with negative comments and criticism but you don’t have to allow yourself to dwell on them. Focusing on maintaining a positive mindset will help you to process criticisms without internalizing them to the point that you shy away from the spotlight.
4. Surround yourself with like-minded people. There are people out there who are having a similar experience and trying to do the same thing you are. By surrounding yourself with like-minded people, you will feel supported and you will support them as well. For example, if you are a musician, seek out other musicians and learn from each other’s experiences.
5. Never stop striving. Always move forward. Acknowledge your progress every day even if it is small. You don’t have to run to your destination in order to get there but you do have to keep moving in the right direction.
There is no one else in the world like you so the world needs you and your unique abilities! You are the best at being you, so keep pushing forward and testing your comfort zone and show yourself and the world who you are truly meant to be. You can do this!