Being "too much" and what that really means
Over 5 days this November, I attended Nicola Humber's Unbound Writing Challenge. During one of her LIVEs, she got on to the topic of being "too much" and how we should embrace our too much-ness, on the page within our writing and within our lives.
The energy within this LIVE was amazing. Although it was via Facebook so we could all only see Nicola, you could tell from the comments and the sheer energy pulsing out that this idea had really excited everyone.
Because this was a group of people who had been taught by society or by their upbringing to never, ever be too much. This is an idea which is so prevalent in women and in people who are raised as women.
Women should not be too loud, too opinionated, too sweary, too bold, too free, too angry etc. etc.
Society very much teaches us that we should be nice, positive and polite. We should be aiming to please and putting ourselves last.
You only have to look at how freely a man will tell a woman he does not know from Adam to smile.
I remember once, back when I worked in retail (*shudders deeply*), when I was simply walking across the shop floor to go into the stock room and a man declared to my colleague who was helping him and his, unfortunate, partner/female friend - "I bet she's not smiled since 1984!" My colleague informed him that she didn't even think I was born then and the day went on.
I don't blame my colleague for not saying anything more to him like "Shut the fuck up!" because retail is a hellscape where the customer is always right. Even when they are an asshat.
And although this man was/possibly still is an asshat, he does help me with my point because he felt like he was allowed to comment on my face, on the way he perceived my emotions. On me! I was just a woman at work who he had never spoken to until he attempted to insult and shame me because I wasn't being how he thought I should be. I didn't skip across the shop floor, whistling with a massive smile on my face!
If I'd be a man, I doubt he would have a word about me or my demeanour.
Then there are the people who freak out if you being "too much" because it is a sign that you have changed and grown.
If you have always been quiet, shy, a people pleaser, some who can't say 'no' etc. and you have taken the steps to become your authentic self who is louder, bolder, braver, the dynamic of some of your relationships will change and some people will really not like this, particularly if you being less benefited them in some way.
They will tell you that you are "too much" or comment negatively on the change to try and get you back to how you were. To try and fit you in a box you have long outgrown.
Because if you have been a shy person or an insecure person, they know how easy it is to silence you, to get you back in that box even if it is only for a little while until you break back out.
And then there are the people who you make realise that they aren't living in their truth or living the life they want but they are too scared to even try.
These people will inform you that you are "too much" because it is easier to pull you down than for them to lift themselves up.
Ultimately, it all comes down to fear. Fear of being too much, fear of people not being who or how you think they should be, fear of change, fear of being the one left behind or the one who is now "less".
You cannot control how another person feels or reacts so you might as well be happy.
Be too much. Be you in every, single magickal way that only you can be.
And if a man ever tells you to smile or says something horrible about you, tell him to "Fuck off."
Or wait 10 years to become a badass creatrix and write about them in a blog.
Either way, I'm with you all the way. Too much and all.