How Understanding Me Means Understanding You

“If you do not want what I want, please try not to tell me that my want is wrong. Or if my beliefs are different from yours, at least pause before you set out to correct them. Or if my emotion seems less or  more intense than yours, given the same circumstances, try not to ask me to feel other than I do. Or if I act, or fail to act, in the manner of your design for action, please let me be. I do not, for the moment at least, ask you to understand me. That will come only when you are willing to give up trying to change me into a copy of you. If you allow me
any of my own wants, or emotions, or beliefs, or actions, then you open yourself to the possibility that some day these ways of mine might not seem so wrong, and might finally appear as right– for me. To put up with me is the first step to understanding me. Not that you embrace my ways as right for you, but that you are no longer irritated or disappointed with me for my seeming waywardness. And one day, perhaps, in trying to understand me, you might come to prize my differences, and, far from seeking to change me, might preserve and even cherish those differences. I may be your spouse, your parent, your offspring, your friend, your colleague. But whatever our relation, this I know: You and I are fundamentally different and both of us have to march to our own drummer.” ~ Professor David Keirsey

I purchased this book while in undergrad at La Salle University’s School of Psychology and found it to be rather intriguing and unique in its ability to help one find a sense of self, understand their individuality all while educating the masses to understanding how and why each person is weirdly different in their own fascinating way. On Saturday I will turn 28 and in the wake of the realization that I’m getting one step closer to becoming an “O.D.” (Original Diva), I’ve finally come to terms with accepting myself. Many years it’s taken me to grasp the nature that I am different and that it’s ok to just be me. Like most, for years I’ve always been told from various boyfriends, friendships, coworkers, employers, family, etc that I should change me and not be different. That I should be just like them, do things just like they do, dress just how they dress, talk just how they talk, walk just how they walk, believe what they believe and groove just how they groove. But, why? Why do I have to conform to the reported norm of society? Why can’t I just be accepted as a unique quirky, sensitive, silly, boisterous, loud flamboyant build up of muscle & fatty tissues, blood vessels and bones that I was created to be? For so many years, I longed for the days when I would be accepted and respected for being different…until now. Sucks to admit, but it took 28 years (give or take a few days til October 10th) for me to become secure and confident enough to say “No! Enough is enough. It’s ok to be me! There’s nothing wrong with me. Just because you may not understand me or like me doesn’t mean that I have to change who I am to make you comfortable. Life is about making me happy & living my life to the tune of my own beat. My life is not for your comfort and viewing pleasures. It’s for my own personal entertainment.”

Through skimming and re-reading Professor Keirsey’s book, I realize how much I’ve grown since the very first time I read it and took The Keirsey’s Temperment Sorter Test– which helps determine the type of individual we are by incorporating the Myers-Briggs’ Sixteen Types of Personality. By studying and understanding personality types, we can learn to accept individuality, figure out which career paths we are destined to be successful at, understand the kind of people we attract and interact with on a daily basis, exercise much better patience when dealing with people and their personal, moral and religious beliefs, and how to be better versions of ourselves by utilizing every aspect of our own uniqueness throughout every parts of our lives (relationships, marriage, parenting, friendships, family, etc.)

I believe that no one should change who they are just because it’s uncommon or makes others uncomfortable. Be You-nique! There’s nothing wrong with you. Just because you may not be one person’s cup of tea doesn’t mean you aren’t a great brew of flavor. So don’t stop being You. Love you and all your quirks. For anyone who may lack confidence, who is seeking a deeper meaning of self, who wants to understand their purpose in life & society, who wants to develop better interpersonal relationships with people, or who just wants to learn more about personalities, definitely read this book and take the fun, simple and easy quizzes inside. I truly believe it will help you find peace, balance and happiness within yourself and your life. It’s definitely helped me and continues to help me understand, well, Me! 😊
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