When I was younger my mom would say, “Jordan, you march to the beat of your own drum.”
Which I’m pretty sure was her way of telling me, “Jordan, I’ve met and birthed a lot of kids. You’re the weirdest of them all.” And while it may be true, I think I’m okay with it because life is way more exciting marching on your own time.
But when it comes to making life decisions—which I’ve made a few of lately—I still feel pressure to live up to the expectations of what’s “normal.” When I graduated and turned down a perfectly fine job opportunity to enjoy the freedom of post-college life for a few months, there were a handful of people that didn’t seem to approve. Heck, sometimes the voices in my own head didn’t approve. Those nagging voices of Fear returned when I decided to return for a fourth summer as a camp counselor.
“Go get a job and start doing something with your life.”
“What you’re doing isn’t as good as what everyone else is doing.”
“Why in the world would you turn down such an opportunity?”
Sure, there were other opportunities in front of me that I could have taken, but they didn’t seem like something I should take. So I didn’t. [I should insert here, taking a job out of college is NOT a bad thing at all. It just wasn’t the immediate choice for me.]
To be honest, I didn’t know if the decisions I made were the best. I never will. But I know they were good, even though Fear was quick to argue otherwise. If you’re like me turning points don’t come with a lot of clear directions, just a bunch of good opportunities. At some point, you have to just pick one you think might be the good-est and never look back. The outcomes haven’t been what I would consider “normal,” but as my Mom would assure you, I’m not much into normal.
And you’re not either.
God designed you to be uniquely awesome.
You’ve got so much going for you.
You’re the freaking bomb.
But Fear begs for you to believe the opposite.
Fear wants you to believe you’re nothing above average. You’ll never be ______ enough to be worth something. Everybody will disapprove of you doing what you’d love. They’ll think you’re weird. You don’t have time. You don’t have money. The dreams haunting you late at night will never become reality because you’re just… you. Just plain old you.
But Fear is dead wrong.
Deceptively, the voices of Fear in your soul whisper (and sometimes shout) these lies into your life, hoping so badly you’ll behave and be safe and not move forward.
More recently (like last week) I started a part-time unpaid internship with a small PR agency in Atlanta. Part-time. Unpaid. Public Relations. Three things I never imagined would be a part of 2016. But they are and I’m so excited about it, despite the voices of Fear that creep into my head from time to time.
“Aren’t you a college graduate? Why in the world would you take an unpaid internship? Shouldn’t you have just taken that paid job offer a few months ago?”
But life ain’t meant to be normal, so I’m not going to make normal decisions. I’m going to move forward in a direction that seems good and figure out the rest along the way. A direction that may not make sense on paper, but a direction I believe is the good-est of them all.
Your life doesn’t need to match up to everybody else’s expectations. It needs to match up to whatever you’ve been uniquely inspired to do. Designed to build. The people you’re able to impact best.
And sometimes, those kinds of decisions aren’t normal.