• Monica Daniels

Leaning in to Awkward Charm

I consider my awkwardness to be part of my charm. I refer to it as my awkward charm. I think people have many misconceptions about what being awkward means. I defy the definitions given in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. It doesn’t mean that you lack grace and skill or that you are difficult, its doesn’t mean that you aren’t comfortable with yourself; most often it means the exact opposite. It means you are completely comfortable with yourself, vulnerably showing up and being seen despite what other people think of you and being so, they may find it difficult to understand you. It means that no matter what grace or skill you do or don’t have you own it, you lean in! Its not that you are awkward, its that you don’t conform to what other people except as normal and because of that you make them feel awkward.

People pleaser you are not, and that is ok! Do you, proudly march to be the beat of your own drum. No one extraordinary is just like everyone else, no one extraordinary is normal. There is only one you, make sure everyone knows it. If music is playing dance, if there is a mic sing, who cares if you’re doing it right? Who decides what right, looks like, sounds like? Is this the ballet or a ball? Are we in competition? Who’s grading us? If its supposed to be fun, for the love of God, have fun! And really that goes out to all the haters. I have to admit, T Swift had the right idea, “Haters gonna, hate hate hate hate hate. Fakers gonna, fake fake fake fake fake, I’m just gonna shake shake shake shake shake, shake it off, shake it off!” Haters deep down inside usually feel like fakers, insecure and unsure.

So us Awkward Provocateurs keep causing trouble for the Judgmental Plebeian. The sad part is the reason they have become that way is most likely because someone somewhere shamed them into creative dissolution. Someone murdered all their creative thought and now shame and fear prevent them from extraordinary originality. So why do they in turn attack? Because it is a vicious cycle that’s why. People fear what they can’t understand and what they don’t like in themselves. Judgmental people fear feeling judged so instead they judge first, its kill or be killed. How do we rid ourselves, our communities and our cultures of this behavior when we see it seeping in? For that I don’t have a complete solution just yet but I think it starts with Empathy.

FYI: This rant was spurred on by a book I am reading; Daring Greatly by Brené Browna shame and vulnerability researcher. The book is really effecting my outlook on being, I am learning to lean in to my awkward vulnerabilities while practicing self-love, shame resilience and empathy. I recommend this book to all of you, it is a great read and you can really get a sense of who Brené is, she can make you laugh while coming to terms with your self-deprecating behaviors, trust me we all have them. But Brené helps you discover them and learn how to over come them from a place of empathy with just the right balance of wit. You’ll adore her.

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