Feeling Weird, Different or Isolated

When I consider feeling weird, different or isolated, two things come to mind:

  1. I’ve always felt weird or different. Since I was born, through to now.
  2. Until I spoke up about my passions, preferences, likes, and found that others shared some of these in common with me. Then, I feel less weird or different and very much appreciated and connected. Especially in like-energy. (Sometimes a person will mention that they felt weird or different until I shared, then they felt comfortable sharing, too!)

So I guess what really contributes to the moments I feel weird, different or isolated are my thoughts and my self-judgments and also the energy of the spaces I am connecting in and the people I am connecting with.

A really easy example of this is that I asked my kids what they thought someone might consider weird or different about me.

My son said, well, you collect feathers. Which is true. (That he said it and that I do collect feathers.) While that might be weird and different for a lot of people, when I’m in soul circles it’s a love that we all share – lots of my friends post photos on their social media pages of feather walks, or feathers they’ve found while out in the world.

my most recent feather find: a crow feather

My daughter said anything I could name as weird or different other people do. For example, for breakfast, I eat whatever appeals to me, not necessarily breakfast foods. A favorite of mine is a veggie stir-fry, or a sweet-potato and black bean hash. But, then she said lots of people (herself included) eat different foods for breakfast (I just don’t know any; rather I don’t know that I know any!!)

Another really easy example of this is that I used to live aboard a sailboat with my two kids (as a single mom….we loved aboard for almost 5 years). I can tell you that the majority of my family and friends thought my desire was *crazy*, and when we actually moved aboard, very few people understood. However, among the boating community, our move was celebrated (I was called brave and spunky) and I was (and we as a family were) very much supported and loved by those on our dock and in our marina.

(That adventure also began my blogging journey! Living aboard a sailboat as a single mom of two kids and loving it, was unique enough that I was encouraged to start a blog, and people actually read it! And liked it! That blog eventually evolved into a blog about the practice of unfolding, which then evolved to this one. In that sense, it was an incredible, life-changing in wondrous ways, blessing to be different! I was the first of my local friends to become a blogger, and am still one of the only – it’s something that lights my heart, very much so!)

I know that, for myself, if I am feeling weird or different, and that bothers me (because usually it doesn’t bother me to be different, I’m usually not on the same current as ‘mainstream’), it can become a source of disconnect. If I’m feeling weird or different and I feel good about it, it can become a source of connection.

When I’m making friends, I personally *love* differences, I celebrate them, am inspired by them and learn a lot from them.

My first article, ever, on this blog was about celebrating differences. Here is an excerpt:

I believe that what I see in you is a direct reflection of me.  When think of the people I connect with who enrich my life, the one common denominator they share is: they are each uniquely different…from me, from each other…. like no one I have ever met before..and I love that about each of them!  I cherish the differences.

Reflection: I cherish the differences.  My truth is: I cherish the differences; when I think of my self then, my truth is: I cherish that I am different.

I also share, in the same article, that feeling different wasn’t always this peaceful or joyful. Here is an excerpt from that:

My truth is that I am everything but homogenous: an extremely optimistic minded, high energy, absolutely embody the essence of my name “JOY”,  live the moment to it’s full potential kind of girl who wears red confidently yet prefers to be clothed in as little as possible…I am often the one who lights the room, stands out in the crowd, am remembered when I exit.

Definitely different; everyone who meets me tells me that they have never met anyone like me.  They present it as a compliment, but for years I would cringe when I heard such words.  I wanted to be someone other than me…someone less different. This internal struggle created havoc in my life: by denying my own essence, dimming my own light, I gave away my power; I blocked flow/abundance/peace; and eventually I became physically ill.

So, what was the shift between cringing and celebrating feeling different? Removing myself from abuse, and understanding how residual trauma from being abused was playing out in my life and also doing some inner work to heal what I could. In that was (and is) lots of self-compassion, self-love and connection and centered-ness with source energy. And, I know I thrive in like-energy (not like-minded) so put myself in spaces that feel resonant and good and with people whose energy complements mine.

Dear Reader: As you consider this ‘feeling weird and different’, what arises within for you? Is it something you can identify with?

Thank you for your presence!

Much peace,

Joy

This is my response to prompt five in Effy Wild’s “Let’s Blog Along in September” adventure.

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Comments on: "Feeling Weird, Different or Isolated" (22)

  1. Visma Mesley said:

    Yes thank you. I too am weird and different. I travel and connect with all kinds of unique people and I love the differences. I also am learning to connect with myself in positive ways when I connect with their positive nature. I enjoy reading your blog.
    Namaste. Visma. ?

    • This ‘learning to connect with myself in positive ways when I connect with their positive nature’, Visma, feels like the key to peace in life, and also in natural expansion.

      As I feel into what you’ve written, I recognize that my children and I have very different interests and passions; yet, because we love each other, we are present to trying the activities and to learning about them (through listening to what we each share and to offer physical support at those activities, as our individual paths unfold).

      Diversity can offer us growth, in easy, gentle, joyful ways!

      I am so glad you enjoy reading my blog! I greatly appreciate your presence and enjoy reading about your experiences, too – via your comments, here and social media pages!

  2. A beautiful post! I love the way you explained your “weird”! It’s different for me. I’m shy, awkward and geeky and love to read and draw comic books and read sci-fi. That was harder to deal with when I was a younger woman because I didn’t fit in so well with my peers but now I happily accept I’m a nerd. It’s all cool. :)

    • Thank you for stopping by, Sal!

      I love that you opened by stating ‘it’s different’ for me. *grin*

      I totally understand what you are saying. I’ve been a love, light, glass half full person by nature, my entire life. I promise you that my ‘woo’ didn’t fit in my family, or in my high school world (or even much of my adult world until the last decade).

      When I read your comment, I thought of “The Big Bang Theory” and how popular it is because so many people identify with the energy of the characters. And of Comic-Con which is so popular that the big conventions sell out quickly.

      Yes, to it being ‘all cool’ – in all ways.

  3. I love my weirdness and not being a part of the mainstream. I think it adds extra charm and character to a person.

    I wouldn’t consider myself a feather collector but recently I have been finding them at my feet and around me a lot. I have around 8 or 9 now. Two of them were at my front and back doors! I tried to ignore the one at the back door. I ended up making its way up two steps and got attached to the bottom of the door, so that when I opened the door it was actually inside the house. ? I shared some photos and posted about the feathers on my blog a couple times now.
    And leftovers for breakfast are the best! Especially sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts and eggs! Mmmmmm ?

    • Thank you for stopping by, Shannon!

      I notice from the name of your blog that we both enjoy the ‘magic’ in each day!

      I *love* that you tried to ignore a feather but it came in – ha!! Reading that, I think of the many times I likely missed the very blessing I was asking for (or answer for direction) and it had to be presented in a few different ways before I ‘got it’.

      If we were local to each other, we could enjoy a ‘leftover’ breakfast together.

      Thank you for the heart-smile!

  4. Such a great post! We should be celebrating our differences. How boring it would be if we were all the same!
    I think, feel like I’m the odd ball out in my family. I’ve always felt like the black sheep. Some of that could just be transference but can’t help how I feel. I guess I just need to stop trying to fit in and just accept that I’m weird and love it.

    • Thank you for stopping in, Lisa!

      While you and I might feel bored if we were all the same – so many people seem to like that feel (they try so hard *to be* the same).

      I feel like I’m the odd ball out in my family, too. (Well, they’ve told me so.) I’m a light and love and very ‘woo’ person; direct contrast to the energy I was raised in. It’s challenging knowing I won’t ever be accepted or loved for who I am, as I am, by my birth family; and with that, I’ve done my best to create a ‘pseudo-family’ around my children and I, of people who are like aunts and cousins and siblings.

      Blessings as you experience a myriad of spaces and connections that you feel you ‘fit in’.

  5. I read someone a long time ago that the most powerful words in the English language are “me, too”.

    Your daughter is right (and also wise). However weird you are, there is someone out there at least as weird. I mean, apparently *balloon fetishes* are a thing. Any time you start feeling weird, just think of that. (No offense to people who have a thing for balloons. I celebrate your weirdness!)

    Thank you for this beautiful post! Let your freak flag fly!

    • Thank you for stopping by, Kim!

      I love what you shared in the first sentence. Thank you!! I’ve noticed even when I’ve shared the most vulnerable something, that I feel I might be judged for in some way, someone I’ve shared with is inspired to say “I’ve experienced that, too” and there is healing in that feeling of a shared experience (even if it’s been a painful one).

      I laughed out loud about ‘balloon fetish’ as an example.

      Yes to celebrating ‘weirdness’, quirkiness, all of the ways each person feels different! (Instead of a flag, I’m going to use a feather *grin*).

  6. Joy, thank you such inspiring post. ‘Weird and different’ brings out two reactions from me. One is not belonging. The other, which I much prefer, is dancing to my own drum.

    I like what you wrote “So I guess what really contributes to the moments I feel weird, different or isolated are my thoughts and my self-judgments and also the energy of the spaces I am connecting in and the people I am connecting with.” That really resonates with me. I like that, in the end, the choice is mine.

    • Thank you for stopping by, Ginette!

      When I read your words, I realize this: there are spaces I didn’t belong in and people I didn’t belong with and the inner pain (for me) came from resisting that, and trying to fit in, instead of seeking out and thoroughly enjoying the spaces I *do* belong in and the people I do “belong with’ (belong as in feels good and refreshing and enlivening to be present to).

      Yes, to dancing to your own drum! May you enjoy the beat, and may others with the same beat step alongside you, when you wish for them to.

      Thank you for the kind words.

  7. Hi, I just love your blog!!!! I’m so glad for this blogalong for September and all the amazing blogs Ive got to read <3

    • Thank you so much, Rachel! As I was reading through blogs yesterday, I was thinking how much more fun this blogalong is than I thought it would be. It lights my heart to connect through creative expression!

  8. I absolutely love everything about this!
    And crow feather? Swoon!

    • Thank you for visiting, here, Leslie!

      *grin* The crow feather found me. I asked if I might take it home and it said yes (the previous one asked to be left there as a sign for others on that path).

  9. OHHH how much I resonate with this post. I am ever the odd one out, not everyone’s cup of tea, too weird, too crazy, unintelligible. I don’t normally care, though (some days I do… but I get over it. Haha!). In our house, the greatest compliment we can ever give one another is “you’re weird.” It’s always met with “YES! THANK YOU!” Hahah!

    SO cheers to the weirdos. My your hearts always lean a bit towards the edge of “acceptable behavior”

    • Thank you for stopping in, here, Sarah!

      I am smiling as I read your comment because it’s relatable! “You’re weird” as a compliment is something many people wish for; I’m so glad you experience it!

      Yes, cheers to the ‘weirdos’. What a beautiful blessing – thank you!!

  10. Hello Dearheart… What a wonderful blog, I loved reading your post and was especially interested in and amazed by the fact that you lived on a boat with your children. What amazing memories they will have! My blog is 10 years old this month and when you sign up for my newsletter you get a free eBook called “Embracing Fitting Out When you Never Really Fit In.” I am 63 and have struggled with mental illness throughout my life and it’s what I’m writing about now so it was so good to read how you make it through. You are surely an inspiration and your blog is just lovely. Blessings to you honey… <3

    • Thank you for stopping in, Maitri, and for your kind words!

      The blog I wrote while living on the boat with the kids no longer exists. This is the blog that followed, that I wrote while still living on the boat, but not specifically about boat life adventures (https://unfoldingyourpathtojoy.wordpress.com/) The day I moved to land, was the last day of that blog.

      Congratulations on 10-years as a blogger!! Wow. I love the name of your eBook and am sure many people find it helpful.

      What I know of mental illness is quite extensive as I lived with my dad as my primary caretaker; who was manic/depressive and didn’t take meds. I’m currently advocating for a loved one in the mental health system, and there is lots of shadowy stuff people who aren’t in the system aren’t aware of (so it’s allowed to stay, unless awareness happens and it’s challenged) as well as some advances in technology that are wonderful on the healing path.

      The work you do by sharing your story and experience is a blessing to those who read and identify. So many people don’t talk about mental illness and that adds to the stigma and pain with it (and when you do speak, others feel comfortable speaking, too and healing happens – thank you for being a healer, in that sense!).

      Blessings to *you* and your heart and your path continues to unfold.

  11. Definitely! “Weird” has always been a compliment in our family :)

    I’ve been noticing this in myself recently too – a desire to fit in, to stay in the background and be unnoticed, as though that would lead to acceptance in the wider world. In reality, my experience has been that when I show my true weird colors, that’s when I make those great connections and find true acceptance.

    • Thank you for stopping in, Tricia!

      Your last sentence feels like the key to peace and joy in this ‘weirdness’ stuff: * In reality, my experience has been that when I show my true weird colors, that’s when I make those great connections and find true acceptance.* It’s been my experience as well.

      I’ve also found that even when I feel I’m in the background, I’m not (so I’ve been told). In part because you just can’t hide light. If we realized that, collectively, there might be less hiding and more connecting in a fulfilling way.

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