"I'll try to make myself as small as possible," she said as she pulled her arms close to her body and settled into the middle seat between me and the man sleeping by the window.
When I fly, I have learned to take the aisle seat when I can. It allows me to exit quickly when the plane lands and to have one side free, giving the perception of more space. At times I enjoy the window seat, but I really hate the dreaded middle seat. That is the space that sandwiches you in with no room to lean, stretch, or relax. A flight in the middle seat can be agony.
When my new seatmate made her comment, I laughed and responded with some fluffy chit-chat about how the middle seat is a tough one to sit in.
The plane took off.
I put my earphones on.
Pretzels were delivered.
The comment floated in my head… I'll try to make myself as small as possible.
I thought about how many times I had done that in life. How often I had made myself small to allow room for others to have the space they need, to be comfortable, to spread their wings, to shine in the spotlight even if it was at the expense of my own comfort.
An honorable thing to do, right?
Well, yes, it can be at the right moment, for the right reason. The problem is it can become a habit. If you constantly pull back into the shadow of others you are not allowing your soul to shine. The beauty of YOU is hidden. The gifts you were brought here to share will never be known. I believe we are here to stretch our souls. To learn. To teach. To love.
We cannot do this with our arms pulled in forcing our bodies to contort into a small version of our real selves. We cannot do this if we sit in silence or speak in whispers without shouting our message to the world. We cannot do this if we huddle into smallness without standing tall, reaching our arms up and claiming the space and spotlight we deserve.
We are all worthy of a space large enough to hold us. Large enough to hold our ideas, our desires, our hopes, our needs, our ambition and our successes. Large enough to hold our message, our love and our light. Everyone deserves a seat on this trip through life. Don’t bind yourself into a partial version of who you really are. Don't make yourself small to make someone else seem big.
Put those arms up.
Speak your message.
Celebrate who and what you love.
Honor your successes by creating more.
Allow your soul to shine in the spotlight of life.
Only then will you gift the world with the real you.
The YOU that you were sent here to be.
The YOU that was sent here to be shared.
Only then will the real YOU be loved.
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Pennie's Life Lesson: Don't make yourself small to make someone else seem big.
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There is a certain magic about where I live both physically and spiritually – on the crossroads of Spirit and Brave.
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