Journal Entry of an Honest Mind

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Artwork by Diya Gupta

I’m feeling worried because I don’t exactly fit in. I realise I’m different from the rest. I don’t know if people will like what they see or swipe left on me because of it.

Everyone plays pretend here. I don’t know if I too should do that as a means to an end. 

But pretending doesn’t feel good after a while. I feel like I’m losing touch with myself, my authenticity, what I stand for, my true self.

Isn’t different supposed to be a good thing?

But everyone seems to have an unfavourable opinion of ‘different’. 

“That’s not good.”

“This is not right.”

“It should be this way.”

But that’s not me. 

On some days these four words are a little voice in a room full of loud noise. But just because they don’t make as much noise, doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

What is the point of existence if I’m living it to please others? What’s the point of having one life and not being able to live it freely as your true self?

I have thought about this before. After some thinking, there is one easy response that comes to me. 

Even if I had nine lives of a cat, I don’t think I would be ready to dedicate even one to how others want me to live. Those are mine and I claim it. 

If others are a means to my end then perhaps I can say, “I respectfully disagree” or “That’s not how I think”. 

I will oppose what doesn’t seem right to me, I have to. 

However, I’ll make an effort to do so with sophistication and elegance. That is because I have class, not the kind backed by Money but by Kindness. 

And really if I won’t take a stand for myself, who will?

I met a friend who said-

“I never bank on people to take a stand for me. I always take a stand for myself.”

When I heard that it ignited a fire in me. I carried those words Home. They say Home is where the Heart is and so I carry important things right there.

When I’m out every day in a world full of people who play pretend, my heart is the passport that says I’m of a different nationality. As a result, I don’t need to fit in. I did not bring myself up to fit in. My culture does not allow it. 

I won’t lie, there is temporary comfort in pleasing people so that they let you be. But what about the character I lose in the process? 

How different am I then from Dorian Gray who traded his soul for beauty? He lived so long never to learn that our soul is what makes us beautiful. 

How then can I trade my soul only to fall in line and be acknowledged as beautiful? 

I think I’d rather choose to have them blind to my beauty than make such a transaction. 

People-pleasing is the Devil that the likes of Mr. Gray fall prey to. I raised myself smarter than that. 

True growth lies in discomfort. I read somewhere that saying ‘No’ is self-care. And so I’ll say no to my shepherds when they ask me to fall in line. 

Just because they never had the courage to be different doesn’t mean I don’t. 

It may be that my shepherds may intimidate me to fall in line for a few days but tomorrow is a new day and we will try again tomorrow. 

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Shivangi Mukherjee

Shivangi enjoys writing, dancing, working out and combat training. She is currently pursuing her Master’s in Mass Communication and Journalism. She works part time as a model, content writer and private tutor. A mother of three lovely fur babies, she pours her heart into words that will hopefully make the world a kinder place to live in someday.


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