LILLIAN CHARLES

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Loneliness, Judgement and not giving AF

You know how sometimes everything changes... but totally stays the same?

I'm seeing this unfold in my life. I'm in the same city, I'm in the same body, doing much of the same thing in my career. I live in the same apartment. I shop in the same stores, dress the same way and eat the same things. I still go to sleep with a noise machine and the fan on ultra high. I've been at the same gym for years.

I have lived in Atlanta for almost ten years.
I am 29 years old.

photo by @arnelh

photo by @arnelh

But my heart and vision for my life is in a totally different place. I am seeing people and relationships and clients and family and work and even working out so totally differently. I am acutely, insanely, excruciatingly aware of the massive similarities in the humans I meet. My heart and ears are on the ground. Instead of offering clients immediate verbal support in the way that I have in years past, I am feeling out their needs in different way. YES I am rebuking the lies that you/they tell yourself/themselves but I'm also just soaking in what you/they have to say. I've heard the same things for years but something inside of me is responding differently.

Here is what I spend a lot of time listening to:

I'm alone and lonely.
I (or "we) don't go out. 
I don't talk about this with anyone.
This is hard to talk about. 
I don't have anyone to tell this to.

Why? Why are we not sharing with more people and sharing more deeply? And if you're thinking wait, wtf, you're wrong Lillian! People are sharing all day everyday on social media platforms... then you're missing the point. I'm talking about the real shit. Yes, people are sharing what they're wearing or where they've traveled to for an exotic wedding. But why are so many people avoiding engaging in their communities and in their friend circles as fully present, fully vulnerable beings? I'm not saying that we ALL need to share our issues with the internet (although I fully intend to); I'm saying why are we not CONNECTING with one another? What is holding us back?

What the hell has held me back? 

We are afraid of rejection and we are afraid of being denied.
We are afraid of being left, discarded, talked about, screen-shotted and made fun of.
YES, EVEN AS ADULTS
YES, EVEN ME. 

Now. Answer this: how much control do you have or do I have of others' reactions? How much control do you have of how you're received on a deeper level? Can you manipulate (and maintain) others' reactions to you? That's a big fat NADA, my friend. Although there are some wild sociopaths out there (but even they show their crazy eventually) most people have zero control of how others will receive us. 

Let me switch gears without switching gears:

there are people in this world who don't like Beyoncé.

There are people in this world who hate Oprah. There are people in this world who don't like your pastor and think your mom is terrible. For real. (And... sorry.) There's nobody walking this earth who has a perfect record. Everybody pisses off somebody at some point. But we live our lives and stay hidden because we believe if we can just cruise along in non-action, fly under the radar, go unseen... we'll come out on top. If we stay inside the box, we'll be accepted and not made fun of or gossiped about. 

CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING:

You have got this fraction of life in the grand span of time.
You have this sliver of time to grab onto and make your absolute finest.

You will never know what you can make out of your one, fine, beautiful, kick ass life unless you live OUTSIDE of the fear that you may be rejected by one person. Or five people. Or, I dunno, fifty people, a hundred, seven thousand, fifty thousand! Beyoncé doesn't wake up and say "well I better not XYZ because so and so's great grandmother is watching in Minnesota." Give me a break.

I recently decided that my last words here on earth would not, in fact, be: "welp! I never pissed anybody off, offended anyone with my foul mouth, stepped on any toes or annoyed the shit out of anyone with my posts! Guess my job here is done..."

photo by @arnelh

I no longer care. I am giving up the notion that my life will be better by playing by the rules that diminish the chances of others' judgement of me. <-- Read that again.

I am giving up the notion that my life will be better if I play by the rules that diminish the chances of others' judgement of me.

I don't want you to care anymore, either. Not because you're a heartless hard ass. You can be sensitive AF (case in point, I'm a puddle of emotions 24/7) without handing your power over. Here's what I want for you:

I want you to share your heart and your feelings with the people you know will not only accept you but fucking challenge the shit out of you. I want you to be with people who challenge your fears and your self-doubt. I want you to be with people who fuel your purpose and not your decision to be small or act small. Who makes you feel like a warrior? Not because you see yourself as better but because you feel empowered. HANG OUT WITH THAT PERSON. I want you to be with people with whom you can share your WILDEST DREAMS and they laugh and say, "dude. that's crazy. how can I help?" or you share your wildest fears and they laugh and say, "let's sit with that fear, it's real, but it's not going to overcome you." Imagine that level of support.

I'm gonna keep talking about this notion of saying "no thanks" to the fear of being judged because, to be honest, I think this giving up what others' think is FASCINATING. So, because I know many readers will say, "but how?" for now, the response is this:

Get so clear about who you want to be and what you want to do that NOT doing those things feels like suffocating.

photo by @arnelh

photo by @arnelh

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