Over the last month we have been talking about belonging. There is a deep-seated need within all humanity to belong to a tribe. It’s from that tribe where we get our meaning, purpose and significance. These tribes come from families, schools, groups you are involved with, churches, athletics, etc. The problem is, instead of truly belonging to the tribe, we adapt ourselves to merely fit in with the group.
Author Brene Brown says, “In fact, fitting in is the greatest barrier to belonging. Fitting in, I’ve discovered during the past decade of research, is assessing situations and groups of people, then twisting yourself into a human pretzel in order to get them to let you hang out with them. Belonging is something else entirely—it’s showing up and letting yourself be seen and known as you really are—love of gourd painting, intense fear of public speaking and all.
Many us suffer from this split between who we are and who we present to the world in order to be accepted, (Take it from me: I’m an expert fitter-inner!) But we’re not letting ourselves be known, and this kind of incongruent living is soul-sucking.”
There is an unhealthiness that occurs when we try to fit-in at all costs. So to combat that, try these things to belong to your tribe.
- Practice Authenticity – when you come from a genuine place from within, your tribe will actually find you rather than you outwardly seeking to fit in to a tribe.
- Stop Negative Self-Talk – most of the time you are your own worst critic, you may have to stop yourself and ask “What lies am I hearing right now?” and then seek to find the truth in your own head.
- Practice Kindness – kindness goes a long way to welcoming others into your sphere and therefore being welcomed into the tribe.
Fitting in is the outward performance-based act of being accepted. Belonging is an inward disposition accepting who you are and authentically choosing to be you, without fear or worthy of other’s opinions. belong>fittingin