When I accept and celebrate my uniqueness, I celebrate the uniqueness I see in others. When I don’t accept and celebrate my uniqueness, this leads to me discriminating against others.
Discrimination is vital to your success and your ability to support the success of those around you. When we properly discriminate between our talents and the talents of others, we can live in a world where everyone’s strengths can be celebrated. Together, we can create a wholesome world through complementing each other and giving everyone their space to shine through maintaining a perspective of ourselves that is grounded in truth and positivity.
Recognizing the two definitions of the word discriminate makes it clear that while one form of discrimination is destructive, the other is vital. Here they are:
- recognize a distinction; differentiate.
- make an unjust or prejudicial distinction in the treatment of different categories of people or things, especially on the grounds of race, sex, or age.
We must remain committed to the necessary form of discrimination while we stay away from the destructive form. The first definition, recognizing a distinction, celebrates the beauty in uniqueness, difference, and individuality. This comes about through an awareness of a uniqueness, discriminating between. This is what we refer to when we say that someone has a discriminating palate. They can appreciate a distinct style, taste, approach or personality. The second definition, judging another’s distinction, condemns and punishes uniqueness, difference, and individuality. This comes from a fear of something or someone different.
The ability to discriminate properly is based on discriminating between and not discriminating against. This notion of discriminating between versus discriminating against can be used in relation to our own sense of self as well as the way we interact with the world around us. And as always, the way we discriminate with ourselves is the way we discriminate with others.
Am I comfortable accepting the unique physical features that I was born with or am I constantly trying to change it? Am I comfortable accepting the unique talents that I was given and the talents I was not given or am I trying to be someone I am not? Am I comfortable showing up just as I am or do I feel that I’m not good enough? These are very healthy questions to ask ourselves. They challenge our feeling that I need to be different than I am in order to have value. They reveal that the only way I add value to the universe is by specifically accepting myself and living up to myself. We must discriminate between ourselves and others. When we don’t accept ourselves as we are, we are discriminating against ourselves. When we constantly perceive our lives through a lens of comparison and unproductive self-judgement, we are being dishonest with reality and distorting the truth?
We then take the exact same attitude we have toward ourselves and relate to the world in that way. When I accept and celebrate my uniqueness, I celebrate the uniqueness I see in others. When I don’t accept and celebrate my uniqueness, this leads to me discriminating against others. I expect them to be who they are not. Not only is this an unfair expectation, it is a destructive expectation. It is not only destructive to them but to the universe. The world needs their uniqueness and encouraging them to be anything other than themselves is destructive the greater picture.
Have you ever heard the expression, “An inch wide and a mile deep?” Many people use this expression regarding business. Know what your niche is. Narrow your niche as much as possible. That’s your inch wide. Then go as deeply as you can in developing this niche. That’s your mile deep. This makes a business stand out in one very specific market. When we go a mile wide and an inch deep we end up with a very different result expressed in this expression, “A jack of all trades, and a master of none.” Being a jack of all trades is the same as trying to be everything to everybody which we cannot possibly be. This is all just as true with our own selves. We cannot compare ourselves to others and try to be like them. We must discriminate between ourselves and them.
This is not easy to do. It can take us a good few years to get to know ourselves better and better. Yet, as we do we should be narrowing ourselves more and more so we can go an inch wide and a mile deep. It’s like giving a speech. They say, and I can vouch for this, that it takes ten minutes to prepare a two-hour speech and it takes two hours to prepare a ten-minute speech. Living our uniqueness takes focus and effort, there’s no question about that. It’s a matter of our commitment. And when we focus on our uniqueness we begin assisting others in finding theirs. We support them in knowing that discriminating is a good thing which they must embrace, as long as they’re discrimination between.
So take it on. Who were you born to be? Don’t be scared of defining yourself. The more you define who you are the more clarity and focus you bring to what you need to do with your life.
So next time you find yourself discriminating against someone, look within yourself to find where you discriminate against yourself. Learn to embrace who you were created to be and you’ll find yourself embracing others much more.
And I leave you with this question. Who did G-d create you to be?