There will always be people who think you're too much.
Too outspoken. Too weird. Too intimidating. Too immature. Too bitchy. Too passionate. Too flamboyant.
They will label you with too-muchness to put you in your place and remind you: This is the part where you should feel ashamed of yourself.
And even though they've got it all wrong, their words may still hurt enough that you consider toning yourself down to fit in. Shrinking yourself in voice and stature. Tying yourself up in knots to be more palatable. More likable.
As self-doubt bubbles up, you may find yourself wondering, “Who the hell do I think I am?”
In those moments, what I want you to remember is this: Whatever it is about you that is too much for others is actually your magic.
When you hear “too much,” that's a signal to look more closely at what is being called out. Because whatever it is, that's part of what makes you who you are.
- Are you “too emotional,” or do you have the gift of being able to feel deeply in a world that teaches us to harden ourselves and put up walls?
- Are you “too naive,” or do you have an open heart and want to give people the benefit of the doubt in a society where so many are quick to judge and dismiss?
- Are you “too loud,” or does your volume match your energy and passion for life instead of conforming to the subdued tones of “politeness” we've all been taught to adopt?
- Are you “too sensitive,” or are you attuned to the world around you and able to notice and respond to subtle shifts in your environment?
- Are you “too self-centered,” or do you radically put your own wants and needs first in a culture that has tried to convince you to sacrifice yourself for everyone else?
- Are you “too intense,” or do you demonstrate the kind of conviction that makes other people uncomfortable because they believe there's a limit to how much someone like you is allowed to care about certain things?
Your too muchness is your strength, not your shame.
It's through embracing your too-muchness that you'll be able to set yourself free. And freedom requires you to accept that nothing is wrong with you simply because another person can't handle your abundance of being.
You are exactly enough of all that you are. And if someone else's receptacle is not large enough to receive you, that's because they're not equipped to hold and carry you.
If you pour water from a pitcher into a cup and the cup overflows, do you blame the pitcher? Of course not. You find a bigger cup.
So don't let fear stop you from spilling over their edges, coloring outside their lines, and being brave and standing up for your truth.
That's what following your arrow is all about.
This essay was originally sent out to those who subscribe to my email newsletter, The Queer Agenda. To get more writing like this in your inbox each week, subscribe here.
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