Our society has an unshakeable desire to be “normal.” Whatever normal means.

In fact, I have forsaken my own truth at times, because the idea of being normal, problem-free, low-maintenance, unencumbered by illness or age seemed too attractive not to embrace.

But the fact is whether you’re dealing with chronic pain, physical or mental illness, financial issues or weight gain, being free of life and all of its abnormalities is near impossible.

Why are we trying to hide ourselves in an effort to be perfect and illness free?

I realized this after seeing friends I hadn’t seen in a decade. While at first burdened that my life had veered too far from normal (in both my personal and professional choices), I finally had to laugh at myself. I realized that all this pressure to be perfect, to seem like everyone else, is what I had struggled so hard to get away from. The life I have now was built from years of accepting and creating my own life. It is a compilation of all the sublime and challenging things I had experienced. Why was I willing to give it up just so that I could seem average? My life was anything, but that.

Hopefully, we will one day get to a point where being different, imperfect and unique, not just being normal, are fully embraced. Until then, I leave you with a handful of our top posts to help you discover and explore the gifts that make you uniquely you.

My Reaction to Jess Weiner’s Glamour Article About Body Love Killing You

(Weightless) – This top post stirred up an interesting conversation on what loving your body really means. Margarita tackles an article written for Glamour magazine that surprisingly spreads a negative and dangerous message on body image. This one’s definitely worth the read!

How to Unleash Your Creativity

(Adventures in Positive Psychology) – One way to embrace your uniqueness is to step outside of the box and be more creative. Don’t know how to get started? This is a great way to begin changing your perspective, see things in a new light and begin to free your creativity.

A Double Scoop of Parenting Advice Articles

(Family Mental Health) – This isn’t the post you think it is. This is tried and true advice on parenting that provides practical tips on everything from letting your child fail to dealing with unsolicited parenting advice.

Good Intentions Gone Awry: Helping People With Chronic Pain

(Aging Well) – When loved ones are in pain, all we want to do is help. However, what we do to help can worsen or lessen their pain. Here’s how to know if you’re doing the latter.

Doctor Frankenstein’s ADHD Monster

(ADHD from A to Zoë) – Talk about feeling different. Here, Zoë discusses why having ADHD sometimes makes her feel like Frankenstein’s monster.

How to Take a Free Vacation

(Therapy Soup) – These days many of us can’t afford long, extravagant vacations. But that doesn’t mean we have go without taking one at all. This post provides tips on how to take your own mini-vacation for free.