It took me 20 years to accept the fact that I am, for the most part, pretty peculiar. When I was younger, all I wanted to do was be like everyone else because it’s a battle being the odd one. For one, how we see the world is the opposite of how everyone else sees it. We just don’t react to situations the same way that others do. Our responses to external stimuli are unpredictable. When we’re stressed out, either we slow down, or push ourselves into our work. Sometimes we take the weight of the world on our weird little shoulders, and become angry and cynical because we feel so alienated. Sometimes we meet someone who is as different as we are and we become friends, united by a similar world view. But, those of us who are clearly different are usually independent loners who are most at ease with our own thoughts, and have a small group of close friends. (Or sadly, none at all)
Odd people can’t help but stand out. No matter how much they try to fade into the background and remain unnoticed, they always attract attention. It takes a long time to get used to the scrutiny because odd people don’t think that anything they do warrants it. Being the centre of attention or the topic of conversation is unnatural to them. They don’t understand why another person would be so invested in their lives. Another thing about odd people; They are often self-effacingly humble. Seeking the glory? Pfft! That’s for people who need approval. Odd people aren’t motivated by praise, so they prefer to be left alone to do what they do best: shut out the world, and do what needs to be done.
Odd people also are not crushed by criticism–constructive or otherwise. Part of their unique beauty is that they are always seeking opportunities to grow and evolve, and realize that correcting wrongs is a part of the process. If an odd person is told of a mistake he or she has made, that person will try their best to correct it instead of defensively upholding what they have done. Odd people take responsibility for their actions. A little discomfort is actually an advantage to an odd person. Comfort makes them ineffective and complacent. Discomfort keeps them alert and on target.
Odd people realize their limitations. They know their strengths, but they also know what they are not good at. They know their weaknesses because it is not possible to fix what one does not accept as broken. (And they are all about self-improvement) Odd people rarely follow the established order of things. They may know the rules to the letter, but they will also try to figure out ways to do upgrades when they see areas of inefficiency. (Motto for an odd person: “It is easier to ask forgiveness than it is to ask permission.”) Odd people seek knowledge and expertise in both work and life, and will do anything they have to in order that they may obtain it.
Odd people are born, not to maintain the status quo, but to overcome it. They are born to challenge preconceived notions; defy prejudices and exceed expectations. If they have not been beaten down and rendered useless by fiery trials, odd people are the visionaries who end up with seemingly crazy ideas. Yet the ideas once thought to be crazy, are proven to be valuable, and in some cases, life-changing. Sometimes an odd person succeeds in spite of fiery trials. They aren’t hindered by the past, or fearful of the future. Odd individuals live in the moment with the future in mind. Every thing they do has a desired outcome.
Odd people always think of the outcome, both for them and for the people around them. They know that they don’t have to be everything to everyone, which frees them up to be the person they were born to be. Opinions from others are valued, but not taken as gospel. To an odd person, love is unconditional. Giving is more important than receiving, and the only way to be honoured is to be humble and content with what they already have.
Most importantly, peculiar/odd people are aware of the fact that life is not all about them. While an odd person may spend part of their time focused on his or her own interests, he or she also knows that their primary purpose is to help others. Every odd person on earth was given a set of gifts that were meant to be cultivated and shared with other people.
If their oddness isn’t quenched by people who don’t “get” them,
strange exceptional people finally figure this out and get unwavering in their efforts to increase their innate talents. Far from being misunderstood, angst-ridden youths, the most extraordinary and uncommon people express their differences proudly, even if the only answer to them is ostracization or ridicule.
The thing about strange people: they don’t care about all of that because there are too many other things for them to do. Without the oddballs, life wouldn’t be as captivating. At the very least, the strange people in life keep us entertained. Without them, there wouldn’t be much to talk about.
Oddballs are crazy enough to think that they can change the world. Fearless enough to forge ahead in the face of criticism, and have enough faith to live life by their own terms.
Every person who has ever accomplished anything unusual or noteworthy was thought to be odd, irrational, stupid, or wrong. (And let’s be real, some of them were all of those things) They were not universally adored. They did not seek the approval of those around them, and they were motivated by something other than wealth or notoriety.
Being an odd person nets greater rewards than being unremarkable and ordinary. Oddness requires a person to depend on something other than superficial attributes. It is not something should cause discomfort. It is something to be celebrated. Unity can be attained without uniformity. If someone you love is a little wacky, as long as they are not a danger to themselves or other people, encourage them to embrace it. If you’re the odd one, live with it.
It is a blessing that should not be taken for granted.