“Why fit in when you were born to stand out” Dr. Seuss.
Growing up in strict Christian home, meant following rules, fitting in and doing what I was told to do without questioning. I was young and ignorant then, I admired my peers who had the courage to break the rules. Rebelling then, represented strength and freedom. Something I believed I could never dare be, because of the fear I had of disappointing my parents and of not being a good role model to my siblings.
But then I grew up, and the young rebel in me couldn’t be contained anymore. Being the shy, introverted kid, I didn’t go all out rebellious. But every once in awhile, I summed up the courage to break the rules, I did things that I normally wouldn’t do. I didn’t know that the saying “Rules are meant to be broken” was not to be taken literally. I made mistakes, upset my parents but I also learnt about life; the hard way. I never wanted to fit in, I never have but this has led me down and up the path of some painful and amazing experiences. Below are some of the positive experiences.
- On travelling abroad- I remember the first time I mentioned to a friend I was moving to the Middle East. Her response was dismissive and discouraging. I did not blame her then because I knew this response was out of concern, limited information and wrong perception on my destination of interest. No one we knew had ever lived there but I was determined and curious to experience life there so I left. And this experience literally opened my eyes. I learnt the different cultures, a different way of life and how to relate to people from all walks of life and from different nationalities.
- On being a single mom– This was one of the toughest decision I’ve ever had to make. I was scared, second guessed myself a lot in the beginning. But all in all, it’s been a challenging journey of growth,8 years on am proud of myself and the milestones I’ve reached. If I gave into the fear and bought into the stories of how I couldn’t make it, then I’d still be stuck somewhere scared, unhappy and unfulfilled. Am a stronger person now and I’ve learnt so much that I don’t think I would have learnt better anywhere else.
- On spirituality- On opening myself up to explore beyond what I knew to be the ultimate truth (Church rules) .I’ve learnt and am still learning on spirituality; mindfulness, meditation tapping, energy and a positive mindset .What I like most about this new discoveries, are the practical action steps provided that have become my way of life . The tools I resort to and rely on regularly and especially in challenging moments.
- Education and books– I always enjoyed reading pacesetters and romance novels before, they were fun. But life challenges and the explorer in me, discovered a new genre of books, new authors that I can relate and look up to. These have been educational, inspirational and fun. I now have resources within reach whenever I need some insight or new perspective.
- Friendships/Community- I’ve built amazing friendships and also found great growth focused groups through shared interests. And I believe this would never have happened if I stuck to what I have always known. Sharing thoughts and ideas on the common interests has been really fulfilling and helpful.
On winding up I’ve learnt that rules are meant to create order in society but they also have the capacity to hinder growth and creativity if followed blindly. Learning the rules before choosing to break them and testing the depth of the ocean with just a foot before jumping in, is a wise idea.
“Live life fully while you’re here. Experience everything. Take care of yourself and your friends. Have fun, be crazy, be weird. Go out and screw up! You’re going to anyway. So, you might as well enjoy the process. Take the opportunity to learn from your mistakes. Find the cause of your problem and eliminate it. Don’t try to be perfect; Just be an excellent example of being human” Anthony Robbins
What rules have you broken, what have you achieved or learned as a result?
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Be inspired to leave your best life every day.