“Cowardice asks the question, ‘Is it safe?’
Expediency asks the question, ‘Is it politic?’
Vanity asks the question, ‘Is it popular?’
But conscience asks the question, ‘Is it right?’
And there comes a point when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but one must take it because one’s conscience tells one that it is right.”
-Martin Luther King Jr.
I love this quote because it is one that really speaks to me about my life. It is often so hard to do what is right, that is, what you know in your heart to be right. I think it is easier to do what everyone else thinks is right and follow along with the crowd, but doing what you as an individual knows is right and being your own unique self is not an easy task. It is especially difficult when you know that what you should do is different from what most consider to be the right thing. Allowing your true self to emerge and deciding to go against the norm is always hard on the ego.
This was always something that I struggled with for a long time, often asking anyone and everyone, (most often my husband) “What should I do?” And yes, I will admit that all the while playing dumb with everyone, deep inside I really did know what I should do. It wasn’t that I didn’t know what I should do, it was just that I was so out of touch with my true-self and afraid to actually find out who I was that it just seemed easier to never have to go there. It is a difficult thing to actually listen to our innermost desires and what we know to be right especially with all the media always pulling all of our senses outward and distracting us from our being an individual and living out our true purpose.
I feel that in my life I have now come along way to discover who I am and what I believe. Getting to know myself and be in touch with my inner truth was difficult at first because I realized that there were a lot of the things that were coming up for me that were different from what society would say is ‘normal’ and what other people would think is right. Veganism and homeschooling are just two obvious examples. I even have to wonder how I got to this place. I can’t say that I owe it to any one particular thing, but yoga, writing, having no television and eating more natural foods definitely has helped and continues to help me find myself and live my truth. Another important thing that I have found helps me a lot, is to surround myself with a healthy dose of like-minded people and read things that I can relate to. For example, I may be the only vegan around where I live, but I am not the only vegan in the world. Reading books written be other vegans or reading other vegan blogs helps me to not feel so lonely and out-of-place.
What I have learned is that we do need to get in touch with that inner truth that we all have and live it. If we don’t, we will never be truly happy or lead a peaceful life. I always felt like I was stuck on a wheel, going nowhere although I was fitting in with everyone else, it just didn’t feel right for me. My mind was just clouded with everyone elses opinions and I was always just wanting to fit in. I wasn’t living my own life or being true to myself and as a result I was not happy. Now I see that there really is no point in fitting in or being able to relate to everyone else if you aren’t truly happy. And how can we be truly happy if we aren’t being ourselves?
Making a commitment to listen to and following that inner truth to discover who I am is the most rewarding journey. I have learned so much this past year and have really begun to live out what I believe. Being my own unique self is not as scary as I once thought it would be. I find that everyday life is only getting better and I can now say that I have tasted what true happiness is. Taking the time to get to know yourself is never a waste of time. You may be scared to find out who you are or feel like you are the only one that is like you and you wouldn’t be wrong. We are all individuals, that’s what makes life beautiful. We can’t relate to everyone about everything, but we can relate to everyone about something. Bringing our own uniqueness to the world is what makes life , well, life.
Find out who you are and don’t be afraid of it. Do what you know in your heart to be right. The world is waiting for you.