I’ve been pondering this question for the last 48 hours; mainly because I recently borrowed The Courage to be Disliked from the library. I haven’t started the book yet, but seeing it on my bedroom floor makes me cringe. I’ve spent so much time over the years to be liked, even if it meant not voicing my own opinions for the fear of causing conflict.
I love being a like-able person and have a fear of being disliked. I pride myself with being the person 91.4% of the world gets along with (note: an A- on my self-created likeability scale). However, I recently realized that it must be empowering to have the courage to be disliked. I sometimes fantasize about confidently ignoring other people’s expectations of me, marching boldly into unknown territory (usually, a forest), and living out my soul’s desires. Maybe my need to be in nature to “find myself” is the result of reading three of Mary Oliver‘s collections of poetry within the past week, or perhaps, it’s something more. Deep down, I know my most genuine self is hidden from the world (and myself), as long as I intend on staying like-able.
Lately, my neural reward system has been relying heavily on external validation via Instagram and it scares me to see how much I thrive on external validation.
Why can’t all the approval I need come from myself?
I’ve thought about deleting my Instagram, but most of my blog traffic come from people finding it via Instagram, so I’m not quite ready to delete it just yet…
It’s weird to call this corner of the internet a safe space because it’s actually not. Despite that, I write as if it is. This is my way of practicing vulnerability: sharing my life through my writing and by being open to getting feedback that may not be pleasant. By not waiting until I deem myself a perfect writer, but putting forth my best effort, regardless of the final outcome.
I’m also reminded by this space that my thoughts do matter. I like to think I have the potential to create something truthful and beautiful and this blog is my attempt to do so.