Yep. So was I. What if I asked you to find the “grown-up” version of your “too much” self?
The one that didn’t care if her hair was a bit (or a lot) wild.
The one that would belt out a tune…just because she felt like it. It didn’t even matter if she was off key.
When was the last time you did something like that? Can you remember?
I get it. If you’re anything like me, we stopped doing it because someone may have said we were “too much” or “weird.” We didn’t conform to standards.
But, here’s the thing. Unless you’re breaking the law or causing harm to yourself or others, what’s the harm in being a little different from other people? That’s what makes you unique and authentic. It’s what makes you, you.
But, it doesn’t work like that, does it?
You see, from Day 1, people want to be authentic and accepted. But, to be accepted, we often have to give up some of our authenticity. When someone says you’re too much or weird, we tend to change our behavior to be accepted. To fit in. And, when that happens over time, we lose ourselves and our identity.
I know because I allowed that to happen.
Not so much in my personal life (although I think we all do to a certain extent to make relationships work and to be accepted), but I certainly allowed it to happen in my professional life. And that’s why it was so hard when I finally walked out the door after 30 years of conforming so I would be accepted and could succeed in the male-dominated industry I was in.
Yep, I was accepted, but I also gave up some of my authenticity, my true identity in the process. Once that professional identity was gone, it took me a while to rediscover my identity, my authentic self. And, when I did, I also found that grown-up version of my authentic self that some people thought was too much or weird.
It didn’t happen overnight, but it sure feels good.
How do I know I’ve found my way back (or somewhat back) to my authentic self of years gone by? Because some people (even some closest to me) are saying I’m too much. Well, they also use words like strange and weird.
But, that’s okay. That tells me I’ve found my grown-up version and she’s pretty cool (in my humble opinion).
I may not belt out a tune (can’t recall I ever did that), but my hair is wilder than it was when I had to conform to professional standards. (I just tell people I’m “diggin” my 70’s look.) I’m learning and pursuing interests I never would have a few years ago. I am more content and see fewer signs of stress on my face. That’s a bonus, right?
I wish I had found a way to get in tune with my grown-up version of this too much self a long time ago. I honestly think it may have led me down a path to a different career where I didn’t have to conform or compete…maybe even to the path I’m now on, which is way more “life by design rather than by default”.
Maybe you can relate. The workforce has changed over the past couple of years and you might be in a totally different space mentally when it comes to the job or career you thought you wanted. Maybe you’re ready for a change. You’re ready to be more in the driver’s seat when it comes to the time you spend earning a living.
There’s no time like the present to take action.
So, let me ask you again. When was the last time you let your authentic and maybe too much self out? She’s still in there. Trust me.
I’ve developed some resources that may help get you started on your own journey to the grown-up version of that person others may have thought was weird or too much You can find them here. And if I can help get you started on that journey, book a Discovery Call with me in the Work With Me section on my website. Don’t wait to find that girl. The world needs your version of “too much” right now!