Trying to fit in vs. Not belonging.
This whole clarity thing comes in waves and I think also in layers. I've been practicing mindfulness for a few years now and it's interesting to receive a shift in perspective when you weren't really looking for one.
This has shown up recently for me in the way I interract with other people. I'm sad to say I can feel VERY insecure at times. Honestly much more than I'd like to admit. I've been trying to accept that instead of cover it up and bury it deep inside. As I've been allowing the insecurity to be front and center, I've also had to deal with the uncomfortable feelings it brings.
What I've been noticing is that it's so much stronger than it used to be. At first that felt disheartening because I've been working on it for quite some time. Then I realized that it's stronger because it's shifting. As I'm being mindful and noticing insecurity, it's showing up in my life in a purer form.
What I mean is I used to try so hard to fit in. It was automatic really. I was a chameleon. I could very easily read a crowd or catch the vibe in the room. I would placate and laugh or add on to a coversation or stay quiet and nod my head. I didn't even realize that I was doing it. But, everytime I'd leave a social interaction I would crumble from feelings of lonliness and tell my friends that I had had an awful time. They'd always be so confused because I looked as if I was having the time of my life. This was not fun and I could never figure out why I had this continued response after hanging around people.
As I've invited a more mindful approach to my insecurity, I've come to see that instead of trying too hard to fit in, I'm realizing that I don't feel like I belong. I know that sounds really sad but it's a happy finding for me. The reason being is I can actually do something about that. The feeling of not belonging is an old one for me. The trying to fit in piece has been a covering of this feeling of not belonging. I'm finally to the place where I can see where the insecurity is coming from.
Mindfulness is still helping me through this process because I can finally stop blaming the people, or the event, or the atmosphere, and so on and so forth. I'm at a place where I can observe and notice and realize my reactions are coming from that place of not belonging. I can then extend compassion to myself as I recognize that feeling and remind myself of the truth that we all belong inside our own hearts. That's what it's really about. The more I can belong inside of myself then the more I will feel belonging with others.
This practice is so beautiful as it delivers unexpected moments of healing. I encourage you to keep practicing even if you're not seeing the results you want. Stay in the moment, observe your reactions, and feel what's happening on the inside. Healing is yours to be had!
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