If you believe in something that’s not popular, but you know in your heart and soul that you’re on the right track…
You may face intense resistance on all fronts. You might even give up for a while, and try to convince yourself that you were wrong, because society’s preprogrammed static noise preaches against your conviction.
But deep down, you can’t let go, because it’s your path. It’s your calling. You can go a while believing otherwise, but in your silent and lonely moments, it will call out your name. You don’t get to give up for good, unless you want to spend the rest of your life in dissonance.
Well, you could shut out the voice of your calling, with medication. Could be vodka, could be Effexor. But how long will it keep your restlessness at bay?
How long before you can’t afford to numb yourself anymore, or your body refuses to let you? How long before you miss a dose, and hear your heart calling you back to your duty?
There’s nothing sadder to me, than people who spend their lives thinking they’re sick, when really they’re just in hiding. And the world has for so long refused to let them be themselves, so they don’t even know who the hell they are anymore…
You could die before you embrace your purpose, shift your perspective, and claim your destiny. You could die without ever knowing, or remembering, who you truly are and what you’re capable of.
And I’d understand. Having a song in your heart that other people aren’t ready to support and understand, is a travesty. All the mixed messages, all the complacent norms we adhere to as a culture, all the discouragement and doubt. These are powerful foes with the potential to subdue, disorient, and silence us.
But it does not have to be this way. It can change. The world and its people can change around us when we change ourselves.
What this means is, if you believe something that’s not popular, but you know in your heart and soul you’re on the right track…
Then dedicate your life to two goals.
1. Refine your ability to communicate your message. Get it down to an art. This could take years. This could take the rest of your life.
It can seem like an impossible task, because the world is not yet conditioned for what you have to say.
What you need to realize is, it’s your responsibility to condition the world. It’s on your shoulders to show people what they’ve never seen before. It’s natural for them to reject it at first. It’s natural for them to not even hear a word you say.
But you keep talking anyway, and your message gets more compelling and alluring. Because you’ve worked hard to refine yourself, and you have kept going even though sometimes no one seemed to believe in you.
One of the reasons you have to go through that, is so that you can learn to believe in yourself. No matter what anyone says or does. Even if a celebrity or an expert or the president tell you you’re nothing and you know nothing. It won’t shake you, because you’ve learned what it means to believe in yourself.
When you believe in yourself and don’t give up, eventually you’ll condition the world to new heights of awareness and intellect. You are a trailblazer. You are a rabble rouser. A pioneer. It’s arduous work, but you’re the only one who can answer your calling the way you can.
The second goal to consider dedicating yourself to…
2. Work on truly understanding people who have polar opposite views.
The reason people don’t want to hear you is because you’re different.
If you don’t want to hear the people who are different than you, then you’re doing the same thing they are.
You can’t reasonably expect people to take your views seriously, if you do not take their views seriously.
So, set out to understand. Set out to build bridges. Set out to find similarities.
Learn how to listen. Learn how to imagine life from other people’s eyes. Learn how to empathize.
A beautiful thing happens when you succeed in this.
It’s called communication. It’s called connection. Relation.
When you listen to others, and show them that you’re listening, and show them that you’re trying to understand, this creates the framework for a two-way street between their views and yours.
You’ll both see maybe you’re not quite as different as you thought. And that these so-called polar opposites complete one another rather than contradict.
Can you imagine planet Earth with only one pole? How would that work? It wouldn’t… It doesn’t even make sense…
Or how about, which pole on Earth is superior? North or south?
Does it matter? Is there an objective criteria for making one pole superior to the other?
Is there an objective criteria for you being right and someone with the polar opposite perspective being wrong?
If you think there is, keep trying. Keep searching. Find the balance. Find the beauty in opposites.
If you can understand your own point of view and its polar opposite, you automatically cover all the points in between.
And when you can do that, and you can state your views in a way that respects the sanctity of other people’s perspectives…
Well, I won’t say everyone will listen to you.
But some will. Give it time, and others will too.
And we’ll all be better for your efforts.
Join the peaceful revolution with Andrew L. Hicks
Sign up for free stuff and all the latest about Andrew's books, public appearances, and policies pertaining to HICKS/YOU 2020.
Instantly receive a free copy of The Art of Being Human in the eBook format of your choice (or choose 'em all, whatevs).
Also published on Medium.