Remember the days of playgrounds, spiral notebooks and late bells, when a good day at school was feeling part of the group, and a terrible day was feeling like a third wheel, like everyone was â€œinâ€ â€“ except you? Not much has changed.
I was part of getting an idea off the ground not too long ago, and had to step away from it for a variety of reasons. When the project gathered momentum, and began to take flight, it was hard to watch. I was no longer its guardian, and although I can see why my attention needed to be elsewhere, Iâ€™d be lying to say I felt fine about it. I donâ€™t totally (quite yet.)
Feeling â€œoutâ€ from any community, project or business can still feel the same, no matter your spiritual evolution or life experience. Unlike being a kid, as an adult you have perspective and other tools to lean on if it happens. But itâ€™s amazing how quickly it can take you back to those formative years, and reignite old pathways you assumed were healed.
Just like thereâ€™s no other way to get over most things than to walk through them, when you sense youâ€™re being left behind – or pro-actively need to shift your gaze â€“ the fastest way through it is to say the thing you canâ€™t imagine verbalizing to other people.
Why? Because the inner conflict of feeling bad about it, and telling yourself you donâ€™t feel that bad about it, is kind of worse than the situation itself. Itâ€™s denial (and you know it). Itâ€™s inner-marketing, the most deceptive kind of sales pitch. Itâ€™s host on host, you vs. you. And the stories we tell ourselves, and pray that we can stand to believe, are far worse than the â€œspinâ€ we might tell others.
Find your ally in the group, someone you trust, and who knows you. And then say it. Say the thing you donâ€™t want anyone to know.
â€œI feel left out of this.â€
Nothing may need to change (as in my case). Or something might. But youâ€™ll free yourself from a half-truth that will eventually have an erosive, self-defeating effect.
The solution starts with you. Not them.