What does it really mean to think outside of the box? Typically, this term is associated with thinking of things in a different way than you are used to or looking at things from a different perspective. Sometimes it helps to get a broader view on a problem or situation in order to address it. 

 But what about those individuals that are already naturally inclined to thinking differently. Personally, I find myself going against the grain more often than not. It’s not something that I actively seek to do, but my mind just doesn’t seem to go with the flow. At times, I embrace this individuality and other times, I stifle it so as not to rock the boat. 

 Growing up, I feel that someone decided along the way, to put me in a box. Be it my parents or teachers, they packaged me up and labeled me, predetermining my course in life. Being young, naive and impressionable, I never stopped to think about what I wanted. This doesn’t mean that I went without a fight, only that I didn’t really understand the reason why I felt the need to fight. 

 In high school, while some of my friends were taking cool classes like art, I was assigned classes like typing and computers, to gear me for the business world. With both my parents and my step parents working in the business world, I never considered that there were other career options that I could explore. The only thing I knew for certain was that I wanted to be able to have my weekends free to do the things I enjoyed. Now in retrospect, if I had thought this through carefully enough, I would have realized that if I found a career doing something that I loved, this wouldn’t have been a concern. 

 It’s taken me a very long time to climb my way out of the box I’ve grown so accustomed to being in, but I’m finally finding my niche in life, making strides to do what makes me happy. I envy those that are able to carve their own paths early in life. They encourage me to keep trying to be the best me that I can be; the me that is true to who I am meant to be rather than trying to conform to what I am expected to be. 

 Don’t ever let anyone tell you who you should be. Dare to dream and think outside of the box!

Photo credit: selyastock (http://mrg.bz/bHqdhY)

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