The purpose of being yourself is to let people know who you are. You own certain power. If you cloak your abilities and bury your desires, when they do come out, it startles those around you.
When your power or intelligence bursts forth – and it will – it surprises the ones you are next to. They explode. They either shatter in a million pieces or attack you.
Other people, less powerful, less charismatic, more nonchalant, may be able to confront and stand up to the same people with impunity; for all along, they have been gently jingling bear bells. If you, who have kept hidden and unnoticed, do the same thing; they explode and attack you.
Surprise and defensive attack happens if you don’t wear bear bells. If you are wearing bear bells and you come in range of a bear; the bear might be quietly picking berries and it hears this unwelcome sound of a human approaching. Instinctively, subconsciously, the bear moves down the berry bushes in the other direction because the bear does not want to be near the powerful human.
Is that what you are afraid of? Other people going away? Sneaking up on people only fools them for a little while. Be honest about who you are. Shed the furtive, covert, secretive and live openly. If the bear does not hear the human, if the human sneaks up on the bear, the bear is startled and attacks.
Perhaps in the past, someone told you that you need to take a backseat and let them lead. If you are a woman, others may have indicated that it is wrong, unfeminine for you to lead. And so, you cloak your charismatic leadership. But it does not go away. It is hidden, stuffed down.
Exercise your leadership
Own your power
Step up to the plate with your gifts
The bears will move away from you
This post was inspired by a Spring Break 2012 conversation with my daughter, Andrea. Andrea is a Christian anthropologist, fascinated (as am I) with philosophical discussions and what makes people tick. She also knows how to love and encourage more than anyone I know.