For Those Who Know When to Hold On and When to Let Go

Einstein was labeled as disabled
Walt Disney was told he lacked imagination
Thomas Edison was expelled
Emily Dickenson only saw 12 of her hundreds upon hundreds of poems published in her lifetime

We have the history to show
The great many gifts they would each bestow

Thankfully, somewhere along the way
Amidst the soaring trees and untrodden path
They had the courage and resolve to say

They are wrong
What others may say will not stop my determined curiosity
These labels or limits often placed so carelessly
May have more to do with them or faulty systems than me
I will keep on moving

They are wrong is often easier said in hindsight
When the talent has already shone so bright
Yet it was in the midst of all this
These were the crucial decisions
Around what and who to listen to

We need to recognize these moments
When we need to say
You are wrong
They are wrong

At first, this statement may come subtly
And feel as though it is far too arrogant to stay
After all, you may be speaking up against an authority
Yet, no matter what

You remain the author of your story

We know ourselves better than anybody else
That’s alive on this planet today, tomorrow or yesterday
And when someone makes a statement about our lives
Damn right we have a say as to whether it will actually stay

At one point or another
We all encounter someone who will say
You can’t
It will fail
No one will care
It will not work
You lack a certain ability
It’s just not the right fit
Statements that fill us with doubt and uncertainty

We need to remember our own story
We need to remember who we are
And surround ourselves with people
Who we truly connect with both near and far

This is not about rejecting all limits
For that would be foolish
It is about navigating life mindfully
Doing so with the full knowledge of who you are
Which is perhaps the most valuable data you will ever gather by far

Listen to others’ theories, feedback or ideas
Yet, recognize when to let go
Recognize those times when deep down in your core
The labels, limits, research or theories simply do not apply

No one has their Ph.D. on you

This does not mean to close yourself off from support or education
It means to critically analyze advice and information
Especially when it does not sit right
See if it truly aligns with who you are before applying it to your life

For how much would have been lost
If the philosophers, poets, inventors, scientists and artists of the day
Had listened to the many people who wrote them off?
What if we never had a chance to hear what they had to say
See what they had to show
And learn what they had come to know?
It’s far too great a cost

Keep standing up for you
In those moments, you are made to feel small
Take a deep breath and say
They are wrong
Perhaps you’ve known this all along

Your life is yours
Honor who you truly are
Take time to pause and reflect
For self-knowledge may indeed be
Your greatest asset and defense

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