S.R.Claridge writes Mystery and Romantic Suspense novels. Her work has been said to have the energy of Dan Brown, the mystery of Mary Higgins Clark and the humor of Janet Evanovich. Claridge novels will take you to the edge of your seat, keep you guessing until the very end and ultimately warm your heart. It is on the pages of every S.R.Claridge novel that Mystery and Sensual Suspense collide.

For more information on bookings, interviews and upcoming releases, please visit the author website and Facebook fan page.

Friday, July 12, 2013

The Password is "Me-ness"

Do you remember the television show, Square Pegs?  I find myself, at times, relating to the conceptual idealization of that show.  Though I’m far from the definition of “square,” the conceptual implication is the same.  I often feel like I am a square peg who is trying to cram itself into a round hole.  It goes without saying that the only way to squish a square peg into a round hole is to sand off the edges, grind down the sides, and buff out the pointy parts until little square-ness remains. 

I’ll be more likeable if ….    I’ll be more endearing if….   I’ll be better received if….  If all of the “me-ness” is ground away.

The big IF.  I think it stands for Image Fantasy.   The notion that IF a person conforms to the image of what others believe they should be, life will be better.  If you behave a certain way, dress a certain way, say the right things, meet the right people, do what you’re told, blend in and be good…well, life will be easier.  Maybe.  But will it be fun?

If you grind away all of the “me-ness” doesn’t that result in yet another human being conforming to normalcy?  Is it just me, or is “normal” simply another word for booooooring?

I know my edges can be sharp and pointy at times, but if you sand them off and shove me into a round hole of conformity, I lose something valuable.  With those sharp edges comes a different way of looking at the world, a creative energy, a part of me that is unique and unlike anyone else. 

Dr. Seuss once said, “Why blend in when you were designed to stand out.”  I love this phrase because I think, in its simplicity, that it houses the core of all wisdom.  God created every person as a unique individual and He took the time to give each one special attributes so that each of us could connect, share and leave the world somehow changed for the better.  He designed every one of us to stand out in some way, be it big or small.  He uses us all.  If that’s the case, then why are we trying to shove square pegs into round holes or vice versa?  Why is our society driven toward conformity?  Why do we try so hard to convince other people that our way is best or our belief is right?  Can’t we just be who we are… uniquely designed to stand out for whatever talent has been bestowed upon us?  Shouldn’t we simply appreciate who we are and who we are not?

In almost every area of my life I have felt like a square peg being crammed into a round hole.  There have been few places and fewer faces where or with whom I could honestly say I felt accepted as the real me and felt I truly belonged.   I’m not pointing fingers or placing blame, as most of the time it has been me trying to shove myself into the wrong hole.  Most of the time it has been me battling my own me-ness. 

If I was thinner…  If I was smarter…  If I was richer…  If I was funnier…  If I was prettier…  my life would be better. 

Image Fantasy.  The most powerful two letter word in the English language is IF and it can destroy a person from the inside out… IF you let it.

The harsh reality of our universe is that IF is not controllable, and if we live according to the laws of the unknown ifs in our lives, we will crumble.  True fulfillment comes from accepting who you are, not who you think you will become IF everything goes right and you can cram your square self into a round hole.  True fulfillment is in looking in the mirror and smiling back at yourself because you see the inner uniqueness that God gave you…and you like how it makes you stand out. 

Not everyone is going to like you… and you know what…that’s okay.  It has taken me forty-three years to realize that it is alright if everyone doesn’t like me.  Everyone isn’t supposed to like me.  It isn’t my job to make people like me.  It’s simply my job to be me.

I’ve learned that you cannot please everyone and no matter how hard you try, you will never please everyone.  I liken it to an umpire at a baseball game.  With every call the ump makes, half of the people in the stands love him and half of the people in the stands hate him.  His job isn’t to worry about what those people think.  His job is to make the best call he can at every play.  My blog is a perfect example of this.  If I share only information about my books and my writing habits, people stop visiting my blog.  They get bored and I don’t blame them.  I get bored reading about people’s writing habits too.  If I write about sex, religion or philosophical ideals, my readership goes up but I end up receiving angry emails from people who disagree with the position or stance I have taken on these topics.  Or, I have people that think I share too much personal information.  So, I’ve come to the conclusion that the best thing I can do for myself and for my readers is to keep it real.  I’m not going to sand down my rough edges or grind off my pointy corners and try to shove myself into a hole of conformity on the off chance that I might be accepted and liked by everyone.  I’m going to share my “me-ness” because that’s all God gave me and if He thought it was good enough, then I believe it’s good enough.  ~




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