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  • I care too much what other people think of me.

    I think I know (at least some of) the roots of it, and I believe I can (mostly) avoid falling into (some of) its traps… but I know they’re still there.

    I notice it most when I start feeling bad. And after tracing that feeling back to its roots, I realize I’ve been living (sometimes for a long time) in fear of [fill in the blank: disappointing, irritating or angering] someone.

    Or causing someone to outright reject me.

    Have I mentioned this is not a fun feeling?

    (This is not a fun feeling.)

    I’ve silenced myself in front of family, friends, lovers, teachers, coworkers, bosses, clients, acquaintances, and total strangers.

    I’ve pretended to agree with the things they believed, in order to be accepted.

    I’ve told them things (true things, always, but not always necessary things) that I thought would impress them. In order to, well, impress them.

    I’ve held my breath for daysweeksmonthsyears, terrified of being found out.

    Have I mentioned this is not a fun feeling?

    (This is not a fun feeling.)

    (Nor is it sustainable.)

    (Nor does it nourish my life.)

    (So stop it, okay Michelle? Just stop it. Srsly.)


    Drawing: Incomplete Conversations, 2012 (wax crayon and collage on paper)
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