This is a HUGE problem for a lot of people – myself included for a while. It’s a terrible feeling when don’t feel like you belong or you feel like you’re different. I want to address this topic today and help you to find some peace in this.
If you read yesterdays article (http://thecatalystcoaching.com/2017/12/03/the-magic-to-solving-all-your-problems/) then you already know that our THOUGHTS are powerful and CREATE the atmosphere that we live in – including the most influential portion – inside us- how we feel, how we act, and what happens are a result of that. If you didn’t read it yet – go read it first so this will make more sense to you.
Feeling like you don’t FIT IT – is just a thought, my friends. It doesn’t feel that way sometimes but I promise you…it is. What happens when you think that thought? I’m different. I don’t fit in. People don’t like me. Think about it for a minute – I’m going to come back to this.
I had a friend from ages ago that was in a bit of a dark place. She and her husband had separated about a year prior and she was having a very difficult time finding her way again. She felt different and alone at ward activities. She felt like others didn’t really like her. She constantly commented that she felt so alone.
One morning she called and complained that no one was helping her. No one was reaching out. She had so much on her plate and no one was serving her. I was kind of shocked to hear this because the previous evening we had a ward event and she was there with lots of people loving her, talking to her, asking her if they could help and bring dinner, take the kids, take her to lunch, etc. It warmed my heart to see so many people reaching out in love and thoughtfulness towards her. I thought, I’m so glad. She needs extra love and I’m happy that so many people are engulfing her with that.
So her call the next day and her words took me by surprise. I wanted to argue and say, “Don’t you remember what everyone did and said last night? But I didn’t. Her feelings and her complaints WERE REAL to her.
I couldn’t argue and say she wasn’t feeling loved, served, thought of because she was the one deciding that for her. Her thoughts and feelings were absolutely true to her. But all that suffering, being different, separate, alone was only made true because she believed they were. I know you’re going to want to argue here – wait a moment – let this sit in.
WE CREATE OUR REALITY – INCLUDING HOW WE FEEL – BY WHAT WE CHOOSE TO. Our circumstances have very little to do with it. What causes ALL suffering is our thoughts about those circumstances.
We love watching the Disney film, “Meet The Robinsons”. Such a great movie that follows boy-genius/prodigy/inventor, Lewis and his roommate, Goob, a normal kid who dreams of becoming a great baseball player. There’s this part in the film where Goob is walking down the corridor of his school looking so depressed and unhappy due to the previous day’s baseball game where he fell asleep on the field and missed a catch that ended up costing the team their win.
As he’s walking down the hall several kids are talking to him: inviting him over to play after school, asking how he’s doing, complimenting him and he’s so stuck in his own world that he all he hears/thinks is his own suffering. His future self reflecting back on that time of his life says, “The all hated me.” Watch it here: https://youtu.be/pnmSWI6vHQY –
Point is – that WE CREATE our REALITY. What I saw and felt that evening of the scout event was a polar opposite of what she saw and felt. BOTH were true. It’s all dependent on our thinking. Byron Katie says,
“The world is nothing but my perception of it. I see only through myself. I hear only through the filter of my story.”
If we perceive that the world is ugly and bitter and we tell ourselves this story that it’s bitter – we’re going to see that and experience that. If we believe that there is love and hope in the world and we fill our head with that story- we’re going to experience that.
We have the power to choose to suffer or to experience joy despite whatever circumstances we’re in. I’m not going to say that it’s EASY to choose a more positive path. To “get over” our suffering. Those feelings are real and tangible and we do need to process them when they come up.
Life isn’t supposed to be happy ALL THE TIME. We’re supposed to experience all these emotions – it’s part of the human experience. So I’m not saying my friend was “wrong” to feel the way she felt or think the way she thought. That was what she needed to experience at that moment BUT knowing that WE ARE THE CAUSE of our suffering gives us a way OUT of our suffering if we want it.
When we feel like we don’t fit in we often think that it’s because others don’t see us the way we think we are. Or maybe we think they just don’t like us. We think there is something wrong with us. But the worst part of all this is that we think we need OTHERS to fix this for us. Then we’re waiting, and waiting, and waiting for someone else to take us out of this victim mode that we’ve put ourselves in. Like Goob. He waited so many years to finally realize that the world wasn’t so bleak as he once thought. But for so long he was dependent on Lewis changing. It was because of Lewis that I fell asleep. It was because of Lewis that I missed the game winning ball. etc. He was upset and until Lewis did something about it he was going to suffer in that victim state.
We think if only THEY would invite me to _____________. THEY all went out and did __________ without me. THEY were laughing and joking and didn’t even think to include me. They go out and plan to do ____________ and they never invite me.
See the problem? We’re waiting on THEM to do something about it before we can move on and feel better. But we don’t have to wait. We never have to wait or rely on anyone else to fix our problems or to make us feel included. We have the power and capabilities to change it whenever we’re ready. The key is looking deeply into your thinking.
I don’t fit in. IS JUST A THOUGHT and can easily be changed when you’re ready.
I don’t fit in *** I’m exactly where I need to be right now.
They don’t like me *** They just don’t know me yet.
I’m different *** I’m supposed to be different. That’s what makes me so unique and special.
Internal suffering is optional. You have the power to create that climate -from one extreme to the other. Awareness of your thoughts will be pivotal to accessing your power.
Remember when I asked, What happens when you think that thought?
How do you feel when you think that way? People don’t like you? You’re different. You don’t fit in?
Depending on which thought path you decide, your answers are going to be very different.
One way thinking the thoughts of: I don’t fit in, they don’t like me will leave you feeling: sad, depressed, unworthy, lonely
The other thought path of: I’m exactly where I need to be, They just don’t know me yet, I’m supposed to be different that’s why I’m special will leave you feeling: secure, confident, motivated to reach out in friendship to others.
There’s so much freedom and empowerment in knowing this. When you start to feel lonely, sad, different, like you don’t fit in – QUESTION it. Become aware of how you’re thinking and why you’re choosing to think that way. Then remember it’s optional. You get to choose how you WANT to think and feel.
It IS in your control. It will take practice and LOTS of it but it’s so freeing and so worth it.
Try it out my friends. See how different your life becomes!