Overcoming Limiting Beliefs
Overcoming Limiting Beliefs
What do you do when everything you believe to be true, changes?
In 2006, the International Astronomical Union declared a new definition for planets in our solar system; a definition that would demote Pluto and leave our solar system with only 8 planets instead of 9.
I remember growing up learning the acronym M-VEM-J-SUN-P for science class. Now, all of a sudden, I had to accept a new reality - without “P.”
In 2009, I would face another challenge that would require a fundamental shift in what I had been taught and what I believed to be true. This time, it would hit much closer to home.
I’ve always felt different.
As early as I can remember, it was very clear to me that I simply didn’t want to be like everyone else. In fact, despite my best efforts, I couldn’t.
When I allowed myself to be, I would much rather spend my time figuring out how to play new songs on my little keyboard instead of playing video games, dream up variety shows that I would sell tickets to the neighbors, and play with my girlfriends instead of the other boys.
As a result of my differences, I was bullied.
As early as kindergarten, I remember other kids whispering about me, pointing and snickering. Eventually, it turned into name-calling, and occasionally, it became physical. I remember a few occasions in elementary school where I had rocks thrown at me. I got hit in the head – trust me, not fun!
In high school, the bullying became so severe that I was afraid to walk down certain halls in my own school. I even started to get off at different bus stops to make sure my bus bullies would never find out where I lived.
I constantly wondered why everyone else somehow knew how to fit in, and why I struggled no matter how hard I tried.
My family was a safe haven. Growing up, I had learned that family would be with you forever, no matter what. That your friends might come and go, but family would be there. That you couldn’t trust anyone more than your own family.
This was the programming that I had received from my own family, in school and even the dictionary.
At the same time, my life experiences (being bullied) taught me being yourself can have consequences, especially if you don’t meet the commonly accepted standards of what people expect you to say, do, or be. Because of this, I decided not to share with my family that I believed I was gay until much later in life.
In 2009 I realized that I would never experience freedom until I was being honest with myself and my family. After all, I was safe with my family, right? Blood is thicker than water, right?
When I told my family the news, I was disowned. Instantly.
There was no discussion about the matter. It was either, “you are not gay,” “don’t come back until you fix this,” or “don’t come back at all.”
Now I was faced with a choice.
I could choose to be disowned, or I could choose to change my definition of family.
At the age of thirty-three, I knew, without a shadow of a doubt, who I was and who I was not. I also knew that I was no longer willing to pretend to be like everyone else just to fit in. Just to not be noticed. Just to make it.
I’d spent my entire life playing small except for a few shining moments. And I had realized it was in those shining moments that I was truly living.
In kindergarten, when I stood up on a chair and declared to the girls that I would play house with them in an organized fashion, each girl assigned to a day of the week.
In high school, when I performed in the junior year musical, and I composed all the music for the senior musical, ultimately being voted by my peers as valedictorian.
As an adult when I finally said no to being like everyone else, broke free from a life limited by comparanoia and chose to redefine what family meant for me so that I could move forward and show others the power of being unapologetic in who they are, too.
Who says family has to be a blood relationship? Who says family requires legal permission?
Yes, I understand, that in many parts of the world, we are fighting to receive and maintain legal family status, but I believe in achieving that, first, we need to embrace a new reality; that we are all family if we choose to be.
Family, then, can be:
Those who believe in you the most
The ones who stick by you through life’s challenges
The friends who accept you for who you are, even if you decide you want (or need) to be someone else one day.
Family becomes a choice, rather than a lottery or a burden.
Family is a mindset.
A Final Note On Comparanoia
I’ve spent a lifetime studying, researching, and overcoming comparanoia. Especially with the rise of social media in some parts of the world, comparanoia has become an insidious everyday reality that causes people to obsessively measure themselves against the status quo, standard accepted practices, and limiting outdated definitions.
Comparanoia when left to get out of hand, results in isolation, anxiety, depression, bullying, violence, impeded achievement, thoughts of suicide, and worse.
What becomes possible when you release yourself from being tied to a belief that was either imposed on you or that you created yourself?
For the global astronomy community, it created opportunities to gain a deeper understanding of our solar system and the universe and to uncover new frontiers there weren’t available previously.
What will become possible for you when you redefine the limits of who you are and who you choose to be your family?
Davide Di Giorgio
Davide Di Giorgio is a #1 International Best-Selling Author, Speaker, TEDx Speaker Coach, Leadership Coach, and an Ambassador for creating unprecedented results for uncommon people - like you.
He is on a mission to tackle bullying and build confidence and self-esteem while funding dream projects for high school performing arts students and teachers with his ProjectUNx.com.
His book, “Being UNapologetic,” became a best-seller in 10 countries and has received high praise from book lovers worldwide. Davide is also a contributing author in the “Better Business Book,” “Reach Your Greatness,” and a featured writer for “Success Profiles Magazine.”
Originally from Toronto, Davide now lives in his dream city, San Diego, with his dream husband Heath and their dog, Galileo. BeingUNapologetic.com