All of us can be hypocritical, tell untruths, hurt other people and basically fail when it comes to doing the right thing (whatever that is).
And honestly, there’s nothing inherently wrong with it, as long as you accept yourself and your intentions in the process. I’ve struggled just like anyone else with doing things I didn’t want to do, but when I still needed to be accepted by others (before myself), I went along with it. Didn’t want to disappoint.
Until I realized every time I went against myself it wasn’t pretty. I could be downright weird when all I wanted to do was escape from circumstances. I could act like a complete ass. And yet NOW I accept it when I find myself stuck where I don’t want to be, or I just say “NO” to the invitation.
I hiked with friends this last weekend and found myself not wanting to make friends with strangers, or even have much conversation with my own peeps. I hiked a majority of the trail alone.
I’m not a good group person most of the time. I can be when I feel connected, and sometimes I absolutely love it! I love it when I relate or in some way connect with others (not small talk–my eyes glaze over and I think of knitting scarves for mice or something). But when I don’t and I’m disconnected, there’s a yellow tape with the word ‘CAUTION’ across my forehead.
Having self-awareness helps; I recognize when I’m out of sorts and instead of berating myself, like the old days, I accept myself.
We’re All Hypocrites and it’s OK
This is where most of us struggle: Self-acceptance of our odd parts. The things we feel weird about or how we don’t quite fit. We may hide those traits or disappear from situations where it’s too difficult to be anything other than… weird.
Thankfully my friend who I hiked with knows this about me and didn’t take it personally (I also share my feelings with her so there’s no doubt–it’s ME). Does it make me crazy, hypocritical or end up hurting other people? Perhaps.
We as human beings are hypocrites and it’s okay, because our feelings change.
The determination of always, never or ever should be stricken from our language. We can say yes to something 20 times in a row and then say no to it the 21st time. We can dislike something 5 minutes ago, and something changes in us and now we love it! We feel one way, then it changes… so what?
Surround yourself with other hypocrites–people who own their thousand shades of grey–and accept it. Just freakin’ accept that you’re weird, awesome, unaware or whatever. Or berate the crap out of yourself for all the ways you’re imperfect. Just be prepared to never really grow or be all of who you truly are. That’s where it counts. How you feel about YOU matters.
Accepting Our Shades of Grey
Wanting to live a black and white existence from the inside out is not possible, and if you stay focused on it, you never move off the dime. You never get to really rock the journey or be who you are. I did it for years and it sucks!
If you want to feel good about being weird, hypocritical, going against the flow, making mistakes and not doing the right thing, here are a few pointers to start:
- Forget the voices in your head from other people who want something from you. Whether it’s to act a certain way or show up when you don’t want to be present. It’s time to put your feelings first and do what FEELS GOOD to you. Take baby steps ’til you can jump!
- Become playful with life. When you play, there’s a level of self-acceptance that happens for being your weird self. It happens naturally so pay attention and apply it when you’re not playing.
- Review expectations. Do your expectations work for you? Who do they belong to? If you like them, keep them. If they are a way of getting validation, trash ’em. If you use them to judge yourself or others, please just stop. Let the inner critic grow to be an inner cheerleader!
- The right thing to do? It’s not what you learned as a kid; it’s what actually feeds you. Start paying attention to your gut. Don’t go against it and see what happens. Become a hypocrite, change your beliefs, show yourself a damn good time, even if you choose to sit in a dark room by yourself.
In what ways are you a hypocrite? What actions or feelings do you own one minute, and then change because of situation or state of mind? Name your ‘weirdness’ in the comments. Chances are you’re in good company.
Companion Radio Show: Shades of Grey Q&A