Embrace Your Nerdiness, and Embrace Your Dharma
About a quarter of a century of this lifetime, I have struggled with feeling the need for acceptance from others. When I was five I had a very strong sense of self acceptance. Being an only child I was used to getting love and attention from everyone around me, all the time. I was the coolest thing since sliced bread. I could turn on the charm with the best of them, and hold my own in conversations with grownups on any subject. Then I went to kindergarten, and it was all downhill from there.
I quickly realized that I was not the only one who was blessed with good looks, intelligence, and a shining soul. As a matter of fact, everyone else around me did too (whaddaya know, they still do!). But the problem was, I was a nerd of magnitude. And that was not lost on my classmates. They decided to point that out to me at every opportunity. And so, for the following 20 years or so, I made it a point to be as cool as humanly possible…and inadvertently started to shed my innate sense of self. I succumbed to peer pressure. I tried to dumb down my nerdiness and my uniqueness, which resulted in a lot of years of feeling inadequate. And sadly, I was still not satisfied or happy. Probably because I was not authentically being me.
I had alienated my “Big S” Self.
Then by some miraculous stroke of the Divine, through discovering yoga and its many teachings, my dharma (or “life purpose”), was unveiled. I realized that being my authentic Self, nerdiness and all, it was absolutely mandatory. Does this sound at all familiar?
It is your sacred duty to unabashedly be yourself. To share whatever gifts you have with your fellow citizens, human and otherwise. Because if you don’t then they will go to waste. “Only when you figure out what you are uniquely able to do, and carry it out as well as you can, can you truly feel fulfilled in this life,” says Timothy McCall, M.D. (See here for the article from whence this came.)
Don’t allow the opinions of others dilute the essence of your being.
Don’t allow feelings of inadequacy, fear, and self doubt rule your being.
Do listen to your intuition, your inner five-year-old, and allow yourself to be who you know you really are. And if you don’t know who you really are, take a few minutes every day to find stillness—that ultimate place of quietude and subtlety, where the magic alchemy of Self discovery really happens—to start rediscovering who that being is.
Your inherent nature is exactly as it should be. Cultivate it. And let go of others’ expectations of normalcy and greatness. Only then can we truly come into our full potential. Be your best Self. You owe it to your Self, and this world, to shine your brightest.
I leave you with this quote:
“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost.”
― Martha Graham
If that’s too heady, try this on for size:
“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
― Oscar Wilde
P.S. Have a story or a picture of yourself being awesome? Please share.