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Fitting Out

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I got beat up a lot as a kid. I was “the poor kid,” the “awkward kid,” the “shy kid,” and I never fit in.

I wasn’t a “jock,” I wasn’t a “geek,” I wasn’t “popular;” There wasn’t a single group in school that I fit in with.

As I got older, I was determined to find a way to fit in. I started to conform to whatever the popular kids were doing. I saved my money and bought the clothes that they bought, hung around in the same spots they hung around in; I even picked up their vernacular.

After years of trying to fit in, eventually, I realized that I didn’t even know who I was. It got so bad that if someone asked me what I liked I couldn’t come up with an answer because the truth was…I DIDN’T KNOW! How sad is that?

I was miserable!

Then, one day, and I’m not even sure when it happened, I threw up my hands and thought, screw it, it’s too exhausting trying to conform. I’m just going to start being me and if people like me, great, and if they don’t, well, they could just get lost!

That light bulb moment wasn’t the end of the road for me though. I still struggled often with the feeling of not fitting in. I always felt like I was on the fringe and always felt like I was way too different to be part of any group…then it happened!

I’ve always been interested in health and fitness, and I enrolled in school at The Institute for Integrative Nutrition, the world’s largest nutrition school. Through my studies I was introduced to a concept called “fitting out.”

Fitting out really means honoring your authentic self, being who you really are, and NOT conforming. For me it meant not “going along to get along” and not trying to fit somebody else’s definition of “normal.”

I can’t say that the feeling of not belonging is totally gone. Every now and then I still feel like the oddball, but then I remind myself that when I’m not fitting in, that’s a GOOD THING! When I’m being the real me, that is the highest expression of self there is. And it’s in the moments when I am being the authentic me that I feel the best about myself!

I urge you to get in touch with the real you. Be who you were meant to be! When everyone is wearing green, where blue; when everyone is chowing down on burgers, eat a salad; when everyone is glued to the TV, read a book! You were not meant to be a carbon copy of someone else, you were meant to be YOU!

Take care of yourself, be nice to yourself, and be well…and until next time…veg in, don’t veg out!

Karen

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