3/31 What is unique about you? What comes easily?

Uniqueness as a concept is so fascinating to me. On one hand, we hear all the time how marvelous it is to be unique. We may be praised for creativity, sense of style, or a certain physical trait that seems rare or special to the onlooker. On the other hand, uniqueness is a curse that drives us away from what we often feed as our deepest hunger: to belong and fit in. My girl, Brene Brown tells me that belonging and fitting in are two entirely different things. Fitting in means we change ourselves based off of the crowd around us or the perceived quotas of social acceptability. Belonging is being loved, valued and cared for exactly how are and where we are- without changing anything.  Belonging feels like deep breath, fitting in feels like panting- out of breath from the chase of man’s approval.

So it may be your own uniqueness has been hidden for a while. You have shoved it under the rug with your dreams and secret hopes. Or it may be that you walk the tightrope walk of ‘being yourself’ daily. Showcasing your special gifts, talents and ideas down the wobbly line of not caring what others think and yet needing others to care for validation.

The craziest part of our uniqueness is how shy it can be. We hardly notice the traits that make us special because they come so easily to us. Sometimes we need another to notice and speak about it to us to really see it in ourselves.

I believe I see people in ways others don’t. I have a rooted conviction that every human holds an extreme value just because they are alive and God made them. No one is invisible to me. I notice sadness in people’s eyes. I see people that work hard to blend in. I see people because I know how much my life turned upside down when I realized God truly saw me.

I believe I can articulate feelings. I actually have an easier time expressing and articulating the emotion in others than the emotion in myself. Nonetheless, I believe God made me with a strong “EQ.” I’m not the smartest, most organized or bravest- but I can read emotion in others and take great delight in giving permission for the people around me to ‘feel what they need to feel’ in the moment. 

So I see people and I feel things. May not seem unique but I know after some years on this planet, encouraging words spoken by others (and strength finder tests!) that I am wired this way. 

What about you? How are you unique? What is rare about you? I'd love to know. Ask the people around you the same question, or tell them! None of us hear enough how others value our specific, special traits.