Sometimes it blows my mind how silly the things I get embarrassed about are.
I mean super, ridiculously, silly….
For example I was out with some friends one night, when I burped.
And when I say burped I mean I released the Kraken. We’re talking a silent (but deadly) burp from the deepest pits of hell.
Now I did what I could to avoid burping in anyone’s direction. I thought I succeeded..
Until I saw my friend Crystal’s face. “Why are you making that face?” I asked.
Crystal said “I thought I smelled vomit.” Immediately I knew it was my burp…
But I denied it, and what’s worse, I acted like I was trying to figure it out myself. But I knew deep down, it was mine.
I tell you that story because that’s just a small example of how silly this thing called shame can cause us to act.
I eventually came clean about my burp….weeks later at a concert in another state. When I did my friends and I had a great laugh about it, and I was left inspired to write.
I struggle so badly with wanting to be myself, with wanting to share my pain, insecurities and heartache with others. I just get so caught up in worrying about how they will respond. I forget that they are human too…
I think it’s funny how we want strong intimate relationships with people, but we can’t even tell them that we are struggling. We expect our friends to come to us with all of their problems and yet we are piling on our stress all by ourselves.
We live in a time where everyone is screaming “Be yourselves!” “Be anything” but we’re all just trying to be what we think we need to be.
If you don’t believe me check out everyone’s hair. I am serious do it. My roommates and I have the exact same hair cut.
If you walk into any major city you’ll see everyone being different…in the exact same way. We are obsessed with matching, fitting in, and labeling it as new, unheard of, or edgy.
I am sick of being edgy, and I am sick of being fake. It’s exhausting, and it’s caused me more hell on earth than good.
What we don’t realize is that there is someone out there who wants to be themselves but they need someone to show them they can. Someone who is so authentic it inspires others to be who they are.
I know all about the tension of not wanting to show weakness, not wanting to show people who you are.
If you tell people who you are, and they don’t accept it..that means they reject you..they reject the real you.
I have read some amazing books on people pleasing, being authentic, being true to who you are. One of the common threads I love about those books is their mention of being exhausted.
Being fake. Is. So. Exhausting.
Donald Miller, in his newest book “Scary Close”, talks about being exhausted after being around other people, from “performing.” Essentially when we are being fake all we are doing is acting. We convince ourselves it is for the right reasons but that could not be farther from the truth.
When we fake our way through life we are sending a message to the world that being real is not okay anymore. Being who you are will get you nothing but rejection and pain. What a terrible message to send.
What if we stopped acting? What if we could spend time with other people and feel a sense of peace knowing we are accepted?
I can tell you from experience that this journey is painful. It will hurt. It will cost you “friends” but really if they can’t stick it out through that, who needs them?
One of the first things you need to do is be open and honest with at least one person, I guarantee someone is coming to mind right now if they have not already. Find them. Open up. And be real.
Talk about some of your dreams, the weird things you want to do that others probably just don’t admit to.
Be honest with the music you like….even if it is Creed.
Be honest about the movies you like….even if it is any Nicholas Cage movie ever.
People need you to be who you really are. They need to see that you don’t care about what others think, they need someone to say the bold things, ask the bold questions.
These same people need you to love them for them. That doesn’t mean agreeing with everything they are doing, but it does mean loving them despite some of the stuff they have going on. Remember, if you want others to love you for you….love them for them.
If the world was filled with less actors I believe we would all be better for it.
What is one area of your life where you do more acting than living?