January 24, 2015

Why Your Weirdness is Wonderful



I thought this was a unique and interesting take on how being the odd one out is actually the most awesome thing ever.

I did not know this was a Christian-based book when I requested it from NetGalley, but it was not overpowering.  There is a lot about God, but there is also a lot that doesn't mention God at all.  It is sprinkled throughout to say, You are totally loved and adored and your quirks are actually God handing you some pretty incredible strengths.  Quirks as strengths?  I thought they were weaknesses!  

Wallin gives steps on how to stop thinking of our weird quirks as weaknesses and start realizing they are strengths.  She even says how "overthinking" (admittedly a quality of mine, too) can actually be turned into a strength once you start thinking of it as "full thinking".  She says, 

"Thought of one way, full thinking is a hurtful quality; thought of from God's viewpoint, it's a gift that helps others understand more about god, the world, and themselves. It is not in spite of her thinking but because she is able to mull over ideas well that God empowers her with insight, humor, and hope that the world needs.  Put simply, when God's heart powers her thinking or any of her other quirks, peoples' lives get uncaged."

That is a pretty awesome viewpoint.  I have always considered (and been told) that thinking too much was a weakness.  I did not know how to keep it from spiraling out of control, either.  But when I changed the way I thought about it, it became a positive force in my life.  I am still working on it, but it is helping me to realize potential in myself that had long lay dormant.  This is the same skill that helps me to be so empathetic and that helps me to find the right words to comfort others.  It is the same skill that helped me work with children and their families and figure out how best to reach each child.  Turned around, you realize it doesn't have to be a weakness at all.  

So basically, Wallin is saying:
Do not fall into the trap of believing that you are not awesome.  When God was handing out aspects of his image to each of us, he didn't make any duds, he didn't say, 'Oh, this one I'm just going to make a bunch of mistakes on.'  If we are all designed in God's image, then we all have aspects that God has, too.  The trick is to look at our weirdness as wonderful instead of as embarrassing or faulty.  God will use our perfectionism, our ability to make others laugh, our way with writing, our love of children, our positions of power, our egos or our insecurities, our desire to fit in or to stand out- he can use these if we allow him to instead of trying to suppress these quirks in ourselves.  

"We've got to get curious, get moving, and get digging in order to find the treasures in ourselves."

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