I have spent way too much of my life being uptight. Worrying constantly about how what I do or say, or don’t do, or don’t say, affects the way others think about me. It’s like I offered out these bits of my soul, and tried to package them attractively in the hopes that the approval of others would give me worth.
The problem is, those bits of myself weren’t actually me. They were projections that I used to feel worth. To feel approval. To feel safe. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the illusion of worth, but when the approval winds change, you’re left with nothing stable. Nothing solid.
It was a bad place to find myself. I’d spent years cultivating the right approvers in my life. People that had power in some way. People that had the respect of others. Judgmental people. Those are the best, by the way. The judgmental ones are happy to bestow their approval when you play up to them, find their social currency, and work to earn it.
Lately, (and I suspect the 40 year mark had something to do with it — 42 is just around the corner) I find that the approval-junkie in me is getting tired. It’s exhausting. And from what I’m learning, it’s not fooling anyone. There’s a horribly unnecessary frailty in living that kind of illusionary life.
What is gained when I choose to be me, no matter how wart-covered and stumbly, is connection. And peace. When I spend time with one of my cherished authentic friends, it’s good. It’s peaceful. It’s connection. It’s solid. We walk away from the encounter each a little better than before.
My posts here may become a little more ragged. A little more disjointed, but welcome. It’s a slice of genuine Lundie’s Life.