We all want to belong. To have a place and people that we can call home, where we are always accepted and feel safe.
And its a beautiful thing when we find that group of people who accept us as we are, when we find that place where we can breathe and be. Just be. Nothing else.
But, we so often get belonging confused with fitting in and being accepted. These are very different things.
I had meant to write a simple anxiety solving post this morning but as I was writing in my journal, I was choosing the end result I wanted for my life and one of those things was a place to belong. and I started writing about what that looked like when I veered off into a rant about not having to jump through someone’s fucking hoops to feel it!
And I realised I need to write about this because its so damn important.
Belonging vs Fitting In
As babies, human beings are incredible vulnerable and we rely totally on our parents, our primary caregivers for our survival.
And this means that as babies we do whatever we can to create a bond between ourselves and the people looking after us. Now, if you grow up with emotionally mature, grounded, secure people, who are able to process their feelings and know that how they feel is an internal reflection of who they are and nothing to do with what’s happening on the outside world – Fantastic! Such people will never resent a baby’s demands or feel threatened by them.
The problem is that most people are not emotionally mature, fully realised, secure adults and instead are harbouring their own childhood wounds which manifest as jealousy and resentment in response to their child’s needs.
And the baby recognises this and adjusts its behavior accordingly. ‘You don’t like when I cry?’ then I’ll stop crying.
As children we quickly learn when to leave our parents alone, when not to ask for anything, to stay out of the way.
We learn we’re too much, not enough; whatever our parents or caregivers tell us about ourselves and the world we believe and we adjust our behavour to fit in.
Because evolutionarily, if we didn’t, then we’d be left to fend for ourselves and as helpless babies and children we’d die. And those evolutionary needs are still driving us, even in this modern age.
We change ourselves to be whatever we think will get us accepted. And once we learn to do this in babyhood and childhood, we continue to do it at school, as teenagers, and at work as adults. We do it in our social lives and in our relationships.
How can we feel we belong anywhere when we’re so busy changing who we are trying to fit in?
As I said right at that start, belonging is that sense of a place and people that are ours where we are accepted just for being who we are, nothing more and nothing less. No pretending, no masks, no denying parts of ourselves, we just are. No fucking hoops to jump though.
And this pretending, this mask wearing, this being someone else is at the core of our unhappiness. We cannot be happy until we are being ourselves, showing up in our truth, the parts we were told are ugly, unacceptable, too sensitive, too loud, too much, the parts we were told weren’t good enough, didn’t matter, didn’t fit in.
They are part of us and when we find where we belong, we will know just how beautiful they are and how much we need those parts of ourselves to fully express our truth, our being, who we fucking are.
But that need to belong is hardwired; so we cut ourselves off from those parts that were judged and found unacceptable and spend years and years trying to fit in, to be someone else and it kills us.
There’s little joy to be found in pretense.
And when you eventually wake up to that, and honestly not many people do. They would rather continue to pretend and numb their feelings of not belonging with their poison of choice.
But if you are one of the few who wake up and want to be you and nothing more and nothing less, you might find you spend years looking for somewhere, someone to belong.
But the truth is, we do all belong somewhere. We belong to ourselves and to ourselves alone.
No-one and nothing else can make you feel as good as you being you can. Expressing the joy of your existence in a way only you can.
Yes, then when someone else sees you and recognises that spark of integrity and honesty and authenticity and joins you in your life adventure, your pleasure in being you is enhanced. As it always is when we share joy with others.
But you first have to find it yourself.
And that takes bravery, its such a hard journey. A quest if you will, for your personal Holy Grail.
You will face hardship, challenging your inner demons, the lies and twisted truths that you believe is the way you and the world are.
You will face loneliness as you start to change, start to stand in your truth and fully be the person you were born to be. People who knew you before will be turned off by your change because they are forced to confront their own conformity to lies and the cult of fitting in and most don’t want to undertake such a journey as you are doing. They’ll start to feel uncomfortable around you and stop showing up the way they once did for you.
But in return you will feel fucking amazing as you reconnect to yourself in a way you haven’t done since you were born. That reconnection, the excitement and joy of figuring out who you really are, what you really like to do, who you truly want to be, the person you always wanted to show up as…that will keep you going through the challenging times.
That feeling of discovery and reconnection to your core, to your truth, there’s nothing better than that. No amount of ‘fitting in’ compares.
Our whole society is based on people feeling disconnected and outside of themselves. That’s why consumerism is such a vast profit generating overarching premise. Every aspect of our lives has become monetised so we buy to cover up our real feelings.
Lonely, abused, dissatisfied, miserable, bored, unhealthy, unhappy, sad, angry, bitter, vengeful…whatever you’re feeling…buy this! That’ll soothe it.
And maybe there’s a temporary numbness but the feeling comes back, stronger than ever. Buy some more!!!
We buy and we buy and we buy.
Consume. Consume. Consume.
We are taught to believe our lives will be better if we just consume more. Buy bigger! And keep buying bigger and bigger – all the fucking time. Don’t stop consuming. Once you do…
Sh!t. No-one wants to feel!
That’s what we’re avoiding. Feeling the disconnection. Feeling the lack of belonging.
That’s the biggest wound of our lives and that’s the work we have to do, healing that. Coming back to ourselves, reconnecting with our heart and soul. Belonging, not just fitting in.
Belonging to ourselves.
Belong to all that is.
Belonging to God, The Universe, The Creative Source of the All Things. Belonging first to ourselves and then to each other.
We are all one. Made of the same stuff.
Individual expressions of Universal Energy.
I really didn’t mean to go deep this morning, this was supposed to be a simple post about how to solve every problem you face. But I guess that’s what this is, isn’t it?
The solution to every problem you face is to stop being anyone other than who you really, truly are and start expressing all of yourself all the time.
That’s what I’ve just done 🙂
PS. Want help in reconnecting to your core? Going deeper, faster in your healing and uncovering the truth you’ve buried so deep inside you feel you can’t access it alone?
Then get in touch, that’s what my work does and does it damn well! This program is designed for men but the same is available for women. Don’t stay disconnected a moment longer. Find your way back and reconnect to who you were born to be.