Friday, June 12, 2009

Out of Living in the Land of Make Believe Volume 1

Where is the Land of Make Believe (LOMB)? It's where you make believe about certain things in your life, ranging from work to relationships, finances to your children, weight to religion, your attitude to your aptitude. Why do I care about it? Because I lived there for so long and I'm now experiencing the freedom of moving to the Land of Exploration, Truth and My Expectations (LETME be me)

When I was younger, I did so many things because I was expected to. I got good grades, behaved well, didn't have sex, majored in Finance and more. Why? Because of the expectations that were placed upon me. Now, don't get me wrong, most of the expectations placed upon me contributed to the wonderful life I live now. I respect people, have consideration for others, care for those in need, love my family and friends so deeply, take the initiative, speak up when it's not popular, among other positive characteristics is because I was expected and taught to do so and I am grateful.

The problems arise when we don't begin to live into our own expectations of ourselves and our lives. The result is that we are constantly saying and doing things to stay in line with what other people want from us or what we believe they want. These expectations can be established by society, family members, friends, teachers, the media and others.

There are certainly some personality types, but I assure you not many, who defy this. They are always living on their own terms. This can also be a form of the Land of Make Believe. Here, these people can be so determined not to do what others expect of them that they become isolated or sometimes socially unacceptable.

The goal here is to strike a balance. Will Smith said so eloquently when he said, "Too many people spend money they haven't earned, to buy things they don't want, to impress people they don't like." This is an act of those who live in the LOMB.

What we want to do with "Out of Living in the Land of Make Believe" is to move people to a place of accepted truth. Your truth.

The first step is to understand the areas where you may be living in the LOMB. The second step is to reflect on why you care so much about protecting the facade. The third step is to think about what it means to you to let go and move out of LOMB.

I hope that you will share your stories here. We want to hear about the areas where you live in LOMB, what if anything you plan on doing about it, why you do it, if you used to and now don't, and so on and so on and so on.

Sometimes the journey to the LOMB can be subtle. It begins with a parent praising a look, a characteristic or quality, a teacher making you the their pet, classmates bragging about the clothes you wear, your inner circle's expectations and more. The media provides a short cut to the LOMB with images, commercials, articles, etc. How many times do you need to hear about lifestyles, clothing, weight loss, good jobs, the perfect match, etc.?

I have gone AWOL from LOMB and you can too. I'm happy to introduce Out of Living in the Land of Make Believe for all who have journied there, those that are on their way and those who have left. Make your journey your own. There is peace here. LOMB to LETME.

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