If you’re hovering close to insanity, the thought of ‘being normal’ can feel like a pleasantly calm, if somewhat unattainable, aim in life. We see so many ‘inspirational’ quotes/pictures/articles these days telling us to be the best we can be by changing this, doing that, travelling there, but what if it’s too hard to do that? What if you’re struggling enough just keeping the day to day shit together to find the time to become that world famous artist/novelist/actor/tv star/chef/lawyer/world traveller/scientist/mathematician/tattoo artist (I’m walking through Camden Market)/parter of waves etcetc. To me, phrases like ‘being normal is boring’ can feel just as damaging as any other statement that passes judgement on a group of people.
Years ago people thought the opposite, and feared that which wasn’t ‘normal’, anyone unusual. I’m glad we now live in a society where being ‘different’ isn’t generally feared (although recent news stories may challenge that to a degree). But I don’t think it’s helpful to go the other way and deride those that aren’t ‘different’ (cool, exotic, well travelled) either.
Don’t get me wrong, I know what this card is saying. It’s ok not to be like everyone else. It’s ok not to conform. And there’s definitely a market for that message, and I’m probably in it(!). But it’s the subtle implication that it’s not ok to be like everyone else, it’s not ok to be ‘ordinary’ that I find unhelpful. That we should be more than normal. Be different. Be exceptional. Well I’ve spent my life feeling like I needed to be doing something more exciting, unusual, alternative, bohemian and do you know what I found? It’s exhausting. And depressing. And demoralising. I’ve realised that I’m much better off if I concentrate on being – to quote Bugsy Malone – happy just being me. So let’s take the pressure off. And just concentrate on being nice to each other. To live and let live. Would that really be so boring?
#happybeingme #givealittlelove #makementalhealthgreatagain #timetotalk #bekind #letsberealistic #liveandletlive #oktosay #hoveringclosetoinsanity