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Is being different a sign of being damaged, or of being unique?

On the surface, it appears that our culture values different.  We uplift the Gungor’s and the Civil Wars of the music industry because their musical style is different.  It’s easy for them to be different because they are stand outs.  Despite the value we place on the stand outs (people who are acceptedly different), those of us who are different feel like misfits.  Need proof?  Try being different for a week and see what happens.  You’ll feel more like a misfit than a stand out.

Lots of people think that they want to be different.  Nobody wants to be a misfit. Being a misfit sucks.  Right now, I feel like a misfit.

Maybe, like me, you’re discovering that you aren’t made for the typical work world.  The sort of world where you punch a time card, get lost in files, and wait for the weekend so that you can remember what’s it like to actually be alive.   You are a helpless dreamer;  thinking of the what ifs’ and the what might be possibles that exist outside of your day job or outside of school.  Your dreams are big scale.  Crazy.  Global.

Or maybe, you are wired for the typical work world.  Maybe you love the organization of a work day; the structured hours and the handed down tasks.  Maybe you are a student that loves the assignments and never questions the intended direction of the projects.  Perhaps you’re a different sort of dreamer;  a dreamer that exists within the confines of the status, desiring to live out your role beautifully and dependably.  Your dream is less global, and more local.  Less abstract, and more realistic.  You’re a different kind of different (ironic, much?!).  You’re an undercover superstar.

Back to the question at hand:  is being different a sign of being extraordinary or a sign of being damaged?

If you’re different, it’s easy to feel like you’re damaged because you are in the minority.  It’s hard to believe you aren’t damaged when everyone else acts differently.  When what’s normal makes you want to drop kick puppies, it’s hard to feel extraordinary.  Normally you feel like an idiot.

But if normal excited you, we’d never hear (or see) your dream.  The world (however global or local) would be robbed of what is uniquely you.  Odds are, the world would be a crappier place for lots of other people because you weren’t contributing what only you can contribute.  

So, misfits … take heart.  You are different, but you are extraordinarily different.  There’s nothing wrong with you.  You aren’t damaged.  Refuse to settle, refuse to be normal, and live beautifully as you realize your dreams … and please, don’t drop kick puppies.  (They didn’t do anything to deserve it).

What kind of dreamer are you?  Global or local?


It’s time for the misfits to rise up.  To draw attention to things that are beautiful, meaningful, and bold.