Feature picture credit: World Nomads
The other weekend I was trying to shrink down to squeeze through people at the store. A couple of days ago I was talking to my male friend who was shorter than me and I wanted to bend down, shrug my shoulders to not seem so big and tall. Two days ago I got over charged for my bagel but didn’t say anything because I didn’t want to be rude. Yesterday I bumped elbows with a man in passing so I, of course, started apologizing and he didn’t.
My whole life I’ve always lived in fear of being too much or too big or taking up too much space.
I’m afraid of taking up space. I’m afraid of being too much for other people so instead I try to be less, shrink down and hope to make them feel more comfortable. I put others before myself because for some reason I think that they matter more or that their comfort is more valuable than my own. I convince myself that I can suffer through discomfort just to make someone else a little more comfortable.
I take the middle seat when I’m usually the tallest because no one else wants it. I eat food I don’t like because I don’t want to be rude to the waitress. I just accept whatever ‘it’ is and let people walk over me because I don’t want to be an inconvenience. I just deal with it because every situation is only temporary and I’ve convinced myself that it isn’t worth getting upset over.
I’ve become so used to making space for others that I’ve nearly forgotten to make space for myself. I started consistently putting others before myself because I don’t want to take up too much space – I’d rather just make more room for them.
I try to be as easy going as possible just to try to make other people’s lives easier, and I get nothing in return from it.
But I realized I’m allowed to take up space. We’re all allowed to take up space.
This is something I’ve always battled with. Part of me is torn between am I being too needy? Too persistent? Too pushy? Or am I just letting myself get walked on? Am I trying to make others more comfortable than I’m making myself?
I realized I should take up space, I’m meant to take up space and leave an impact. I am meant to be here just like everyone else. If I’m too much for other people that’s their own issue to deal with.
Take up space. Speak your voice. Do what you were meant to do. Be bold. Don’t apologize for being you – NEVER apologize for being you.
Being yourself is incredible because there is no one else like you, and that’s really cool if you think about it. You were born to take up space, to leave your mark, to take risks, to live your truth and that’s what you should be doing.
Quit focusing on making others more comfortable by making yourself less comfortable. You’re not doing anyone a favor, you’re only making your life harder than it has to be.
Stop being afraid to take up space because you’re allowed to take up space, and you should.