My world has the best peeps! Last Sunday, the Tall Poppy Syndrome (TPS) note brought a torrent of new facts and insights into MY inbox. This week, I want to share some of them with you and inspire you to Stand Tall.
TPS is the Aussie term about the expectation that poppies should grow together. If one grows too tall, it gets cut down to size immediately. Did you know there is ALSO a similar Soviet term? “The tallest blade of grass is the first to be cut by the scythe.”
This proves (to me at least) that humans are all the same, the world over. We have certainly seen that with the COVID pandemic, haven’t we? So who’d a thunk a global movement about ‘to vaxx or not,’ to mask or not would suddenly enter our collective psyche?
So since we are all essentially the same, we humans also suffer from the same green-eyed monster – jealousy. The fact is, we all suffer bouts of envy or jealousy during our lives. Because someone ELSE appears to have better luck, more money, increased opportunities, talent, whatever it is, compared to us.
My point is, we can see the Tall Poppies for ourselves. And because we don’t like them, our first reaction is never to be happy for the other person. Sadly, the most common first reaction is to try to cut the other person down.
Because apparently, if we all are equal, it is unsafe to our personal status quo that someone else has more, is more, does more. Rubbish!
This feeds into our emotions and feelings in one of two ways.
First, we keep ourselves down — with games and tactics like going along to get along, playing safe all the time, keeping our heads down lest we inadvertently get them cut off or even humble brags.
Speaking of humble bragging — did you know, Golda Meir supposedly said to someone at a party, “Don’t be so humble. You’re not that great.” See? The facts we learn together!
The second way this rubbish feeds into our emotions and feelings is what several people were quick to highlight — the Imposter Syndrome. Imposter Syndrome (IS) is about the feelings we all get when we are afraid of our own success and question our competency. As in, I am not nearly as great, wonderful, amazing as others seem to think I am. My GAWD, what will happen the day they find out I am a fraud?
TPS pertains to the outside factors which influence us and what other people say and do about our success. IS refers to ourselves – what we internally say and do about our own levels of success. And yes, I do accept both of these ‘conditions’ are two different sides of a very similar coin.
They are also fundamental human behaviours that have been around for centuries.
Today’s point is to call out these ingrained beliefs and behaviours and say, we are better than this!
Yes, we humans ARE equal in several key areas. However, we all have our own unique set of skills, talents and brilliance. We brought them with us when we were born. We honed them as we lived this life. We share them based on our desire to make an impact in the world. We are entitled to be proud of our own accomplishments AND the accomplishments of others. We need to celebrate our own successes and the successes of our fellow humans. There is room for everyone.
Right now, the news from around the world and from all the global think tanks is not particularly upbeat. I suspect most of us agree that a bunch of something different needs to be done. However, I am not sure we agree on what that bunch of something is. So here’s a thought.
Stand tall and start playing bigger.
Stand in your own power and make your ideas heard. Be a beacon and shine your light in your part of the world. Because here’s the thing. None of us has to have a definitive answer. And that’s okay. What matters most is we are focused on the right endpoint. We only need to be pointed in a direction that impacts the most – for the good of everyone.
We do no favours to ourselves and to the world, by hiding, by worrying about what someone else thinks about our thoughts or our messages, by comparing ourselves to others, by worrying if someone will call us out or find out we are not who we say we are. We are all perfect in our own imperfect way. Therefore, stand tall and be yourself. You are more than enough — just the way you are.
If you’ve got a few issues with standing tall, reach out to me. The next sessions of Reclaim Your Personal Power start soon.