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My kid is a weirdo

My kid is weird. Yes, I said he is weird. Actually, both of my kids could be considered weird, and I love it. Since they were toddlers, I have been telling them that being weird is the way to go. So if you were to walk up to them today and tell them they’re weird, they’d say, “thank you.”

I don’t think I fully understood it then, but when I taught them to embrace being weird (aka out of the ordinary), I guess I wanted to give them the gift of not caring what other people thought of them, especially since I cared so much about what other people thought of me. So I took something that could be used against them and made it a positive quality.

Odd, quirky, strange, weirdo.

If you take the power away from the label, it’s just a word.

Let’s take a look at the word.

Merriam-Webster defines weird as “unusual or strange.” Full definition, “of strange or extraordinary character.” “Mysteriously strange or fantastic.”

Let’s look at that word strange. “Different from what is usual, ordinary, or expected.”

Why do we think being weird is bad? What is there not to love in those definitions? Aren’t the best people extraordinary, fantastic, and different from what is expected? So why do most of us work so hard to fit in; to be ordinary???

Listen, I’ll be honest; sometimes, I have moments when I wonder what other people think of them. But I realize that if I embrace their weirdness, they will continue to do so too. If I flinch, they will see it. The goal here is total self-acceptance.

People are always going to talk, but if you are fully confident and accepting of who you are, it doesn’t really matter what they say about you.

So how can we help them with self-acceptance?

  1. It starts with you. Embrace their weirdness or quirkiness. We’ve been conditioned to want them to fit in. It makes life easier (until it doesn’t). The problem is the cost. What is required to fit in? What do we need to sacrifice? Who’s in control of us fitting in? Not us, that’s for sure. If we want our kids to be in control of their choices and decisions, then they need to be secure in themselves, and they need to BE themselves. If we want them to be themselves, we need to embrace them as they are, quirks and all.

  2. Find ways to compliment their uniqueness without making it obvious. Praise them when you see them think or act outside of the box or when they do something in a unique way. A positive comment or compliment goes a long way to helping them understand those things are their superpowers. It makes them feel good about themselves instead of self-conscious, especially if it’s done naturally. Find the good in the tics. You may need to get creative. If you’re at a loss, imagine a world where their tic is gone, but in losing it, you lose them.

  3. While you’re at it, embrace your inner weirdo. I’m sure you have things you are insecure about. I think most of us do. Make peace with them. Start by letting go of expectations - the shoulds and supposed tos. Then start building yourself up (self-work). Then stop caring what others think (this becomes easier after the first two). Then you can tell your kids about those things you used to feel insecure about but that you now know are your superpowers. Show them the way. I’ve said it before and, I’ll say it a million times more, you set the example for them. They learn by watching you.

  4. Speak to them about what it means when someone talks negatively about them - when they judge you or talk badly about you, it has to do with their own insecurities and nothing to do with you. As long as you are you, you have nothing to worry about, and being yourself is the only way to find the people that truly deserve to be an important part of your life. Everyone has a microphone and can say what they want to say, but you control the volume at which you listen. They are being cruel? Volume down. They are being hateful? Volume muted.

Before I wrap up, I’ll share part of my inner weirdo with you. I hear music in my head almost all the time. As words are spoken, they match up with song lyrics. When I see pretty sights, a beautiful song comes with it. When I’m angry or annoyed, I hear Limp Bizkit. There are songs when I’m sad, happy, depressed, stressed. You name it; music accompanies it. When the music is happy, dancing comes with it. At home, I am very often singing and dancing. Like, an unnatural amount. I used to keep this under wraps before I became unapologetically me, but now, I sing, and I dance in front of my family, friends, kid’s friends, my pets, the dogs I walk, the kids I teach, random people out in public.

I ask you, what’s the point of life if you’re not being yourself and having some fun while you're at it?

Weirdos rejoice!

Until next time...


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