Finding Inspiration in Individuality: Why You SHOULD Stick Out Like a Sore Thumb

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I was tiny as kid. And very conscious of it. I saw my own shadow and was appalled at how “small” I really was.

I think I was surprised because inside I felt big-HUGE even! My spirit poured out from beyond my childlike body like hot, liquid gold, bright and all glowing.

Yet, my enthusiasm came out in sometimes unkind ways. When I drew grass, for example, I made sure there was dirt below it. A layer of brown crayons and then a shade of green.

And when the other girls pointed and laughed, I argued my side and they fought back. But I stood my ground (no pun intended).

They could make green grass all they wanted. But I insisted that mine’s be brown and green and I would leave it that way.

It was definitely a sign of what was to come-my desire to be an authentic me-to stand out like a sore thumb and be as different as I could possibly me. (My poor mom!)

And to this day, I advocate and have always advocated for others to learn to embrace their uniqueness-to find what makes them brown instead of green and to be as true to themselves as they can be.

While it’s not always easy to stand apart from the crowd, being authentic, being who you were meant to be, is the easiest way to find your true calling in life.

I know for a fact that I could have still been a Research Assistant or an Administrative Assistant if that’s what I wanted to be. But my innate quirkiness, insatiable curiosity and maddening borderline insane desire for creativity, makes me shed sameness and throw my finger up at conformity. Then, out of exhaustion and pure laziness I opted to just accept who I am…warty and all.

Can’t say it’s the easiest path in life. Nor can I say it’s always happy. But in the end, I know who I am, who I love, what makes me happy and why I do what I do. And being able to say that is purely priceless to me.

How about you?

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The Blessings of Failure

Failure. It’s something I’ve written a lot about. I wrote about here, for example.

I write about it a lot because I have tons of experience at it.

In fact, when my husband and I were racking our brain thinking up new article ideas for me to query, he said, “You have to write about something you’re good at. I know! Failure!”

Yep, it definitely was not the answer I was expecting. But there it was. And while I’ve always written about how to beat failure, I’ve never thought about failure as a blessing.

But it is.

It was after watching J.K. Rowling’s Harvard commencement speech that I was reminded about the power of failure. Rowling puts it so eloquently, articulately and honestly that you can’t help but be inspired by it.

It’s 10 minutes long and worth it. But if you don’t have the time, fast forward to her words on failure. It’s 7:10 in.

She says inspiring things like this, “It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you fail by default.”

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