‘She has learned not to let go of the pieces of herself that she needs in order to be what someone else wants. She’s learned not to compromise. She’s learned not to settle. She’s learned, as difficult as it, how to be her own sun’ Shonda Rhimes, Year of the Yes
Did you ever have to make yourself smaller, in order to preserve someone else’s feelings or expectations? Did you ever make yourself less vibrant, present, smart, beautiful, intelligent, curious, weird, opinionated, happy, kind, fierce, BOLD…in order not to threaten someone else’s confidence? Do you ever feel less like yourself around them?
Do you tone down your success in order not to offend them?
Who’s them? that friend, that lover, that family member, whoever.
Do you ever dim your own light for them?
To dim your own light is to cater to someone else’s ego, as well as making sure that your very own existence around them does not represent a threat to theirs. We dim our own light, to please those we love, those whom we wish to be loved by, as well as those we fear. We are scared to hurt the other person’s feelings or ego. Whether dimming your own light comes from a place of fear or love, it will always require you to let go of pieces of yourself that you need. Dimming your own light will always require you to compromise and to settle. To settle by getting less than you deserve and being less than what you can be.
If you are someone who needs other to dim their light so you can shine more, learn to trust the power and uniqueness of your own light. Asking others to switch off their own light won’t make yours shine any brighter. Pushing others to downplay their success or their qualities, won’t make you shine any brighter. The right lover, the right friend will love you for who you are, not who you could be. They will celebrate you, not try to compete with you. They will uplift you, not try to undermine you. Learn to not compromise your complexity in order to be loved/accepted/admired. Learn not to settle, because despite what we can think sometimes, we all deserve to fully shine on our own accord. You have no competition to destroy, only yourself to build up.
I have to be honest and also say that I have been on both side of the situation; dimming my own light for others, and having others dim their own light to cater to my lack of confidence, because misery loves company. Neither side feel good. Both side will leave you empty and miserable.
I hope you never have to find yourself on either side of such a situation. That you never have to look for peace, happiness and love outside of yourself. I hope that you can look for validation in your mirror’s reflection. Most importantly, I hope that you celebrate every single aspect of yourself. Do not leave a single one unattended. Your mind, your intelligence and your qualities are way too complexed to be simplified or asked to be ‘toned down’. Don’t abandon the pieces that make you so special, for anyone. If they don’t want to see you shine; let them go or walk away.
I hope you never have to let go of pieces of yourself, in order to be what someone else wants.
I hope, you learn how to be your own sun.
Make up & photography by the very talented @BienvenueChezMam