“In order for one to “Think outside the box” wouldn’t it be helpful to know exactly what that box is, and what’s in it?” ~Derek Speed via Google+
“Outside of the Box” is a phrase that has followed me throughout my entire life in many ways, and I now see this same phrase, following the life, of my brilliantly beautiful 3 yr old son. Others often label me, my thoughts, my ideas, my philosophies, my actions, my emotional responses, my “outside of the box,” in an attempt to make sense as to why I think, why I act, and why I believe, differently than they do, or in ways other than what they are familiar or comfortable with. Many people, as a result of their own fears and insecurities, have a very strict human nature/behavior category based organizational system set up for themselves, which serves as the foundation for their own understandings and judgments people. It is the set of rules by which they define those worthy of their love, or hate, or any other attachment/avoidance based relationship the encounter in their lives. Many people create labels, develop definitions, and then choose which of the self serving “boxes” a person “fits” in. This creates a sense of maintaining some kind of control, a sense of reassuring emotional safety, a guideline to follow of established rules of engagement, which defines the ways they engage with others in all aspects of their lives. When this system is challenged by “out of the box” people like myself and my son, when there is no set label or definition they have to explain what about us doesn’t “make sense” or isn’t “acceptable” to them, we are placed “outside” of their “boxes,” and we never really know the name or contents of boxes they attempted and failed, to place us in. Our “outside of the box” standing remains in place, separates us from them, as long as who we are and what we have to offer, isn’t perceived as useful, beneficial, or familiar enough to them. And yet…the moment our thoughts, actions, and/or beliefs may provide something they want, something that will help them, something they see as useful, something they are willing to possibly accept, our being “outside of the box” becomes celebrated or praised by them. I have seen this over and over and over again in both my professional and personal relationships, and its a pattern most people are never aware of and therefore never change.
“Some people will only love you, as long as you fit in their box. Don’t be afraid to disappoint.”
I am not afraid.