When we were small children, in an effort to control our exuberance, many of our school teachers sought to encourage conformity. We had to present our paperwork in a particular way. We have to behave in the prescribed manner. Our parents encouraged conformity also. We arose at the same time. We ate our agreed-upon diet. We had a prearranged place for sitting at the dinner table. These early lessons about conformity required discipline on our parts.

I think that the reason our parents and teachers encouraged conformity was for the sake of channeling all the energy that a youngster exudes. Without channeling the energy, it would escape all over the place from us and would not be productive. It certainly would not be enjoyable for those around us. It was not always easy for us to achieve this conformity.

When I think of energy, I believe that the Life Force or Energy is all that we truly are. It is an invisible, powerful force. If it isn’t channeled wisely, it will not produce the things that we need it to produce to live directed, accomplished, successful lives and this is our goal after all.

Another reason for being contrary occurs when we get out from under the thumb of those in authority over us. We rebel against their authority. We act out in non-conforming ways. Much of the reason for why we act out can be attributed to our lack of understanding about Life’s process of unfoldment.

We are here, I believe, to unfold a complete and full concept of the magnificence of the Self that each of us is. When we stretch out beyond what are prescribed manners of behavior, it is that infinite part of us that is reaching forward to extend it’s Self into becoming “more” in some way. It is part of the process of unfoldment to extend, to experiment, to test and to try.

We are frequently judged by those outside of ourselves – our family, our teachers, the law – and if we are out of conformity with the standards established by those others outside of ourselves, we are viewed as “less than” in one way or another.

It is possible to both stretch our individuality and remain inside of the law. The stretching doesn’t have to happen in a manner that is public. You can figure out how to express who you truly are in all of it’s wonderful glory without offending the principles that allow us to maintain our agreements. For example, traffic signals are an imposed standard that we all agree to so that cars don’t slam into one another. If you want to stretch this standard, it would be wisest to do it at a time when few or no other cars are on the road, like during the middle of the night!

Are you viewed as contrary? Are you viewed as such because you are outspoken? There are very quiet people who are truly contrary. Is your manner of clothing choices viewed as contrary? There are very conservative dressers in public who are quite contrary in private. But what if you truly don’t care if folks see you as contrary. What are those benefits?

You’d surely be distinctive. No one else can be that brand called you except you. Others might view you as a role model. You’d stand out in a crowd. You’d be out of the box and others might even try to imitate you because you’ve got a better idea. You’d be scared some of the time, courageous other times and for sure, you’d be having a whole bunch of fun. You’ll just have to decide how contrary you want to be publically and whether you really do have a better mousetrap to represent. I wish you well on your journey.

Author's Bio: 

Maria Khalifé, expert in holistic, motivational living, teaches powerful, life-changing techniques. Universal principles sustain her revolutionary methods of coaching, speaking and teaching. Certified at the Ford Institute in San Diego, Maria leads others in accelerated growth on The Path through The Change Coaching Institute. http://www.changecoachinginstitute.com