The person you are is sometimes in conflict with the person people tell you to be or design for you. Here is an illustration from my own experience earlier in life.
I spent my school years in boarding schools where life was regimented and conformity expected. Everybody was expected “to be” and behave and think in conformity with the rest of the school population . At some levels, this was necessary for the smooth functioning of the school community. Unfortunately though, it also extended to every aspect of life to even discourage individuality.
One day as I walked into my dormitory, accompanied by a friend, somebody had inscribed on the floor in front of my bed, and in large print, “Conservative Individualist”.Embarrassed as my friend read the script loudly, I hurriedly scribbled it out. For a long time after, I was angry with my nineteen co-residents of the dormitory.
I knew I was – and still am – sometimes reserved, but far from individualist. As to “conservative” – a derogatory term in our academic circles – I was and still am, exactly the opposite.
The point is, I should not have worried about what other people “told” me I was. I needed to be comfortable with who I was. After all, despite our academic opinions, conservatism is not synonymous with deficiency.
Acceptance and cherishing of oneself are essential elements of transformation.
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