Have you ever shared something you didn’t agree with (or agreed with part of but, in truth, it didn’t sit right with you) because that was the “thing” to share at the moment and you were afraid if you didn’t you’d be viewed as being on the wrong side of an issue? I have.

Have you ever not said what you think because you’re afraid of losing clients, upsetting colleagues, friends or family? I have.

Have you ever lost sleep because of something you posted because you were afraid of what people would think? I have

Have you ever bought the latest “thing” because you didn’t want to miss out? I have.

For a year I’ve been suffering in silence and not sharing what I think because I’ve been afraid.

The truth is, this is an old pattern. I waited an extra two years to defend my dissertation because I knew what I was saying would upset everyone. That was two years of my life and no one even approached me and said they had a problem.

I’ve never said, thought or done the easy things.

I often stand somewhere in the hinterlands, while debates rage around me, seeing something completely different about the issue.

As an anthropologist, this is how I was trained: to always keep an open mind, see things from many points of view and not judge another on the basis of my own ideas.

Living by the principles of cultural relativism is not an easy way to live but it is the only way I know how to sleep at night. The world is complex and I don’t have the answers and I’m very wary of people who tell me they do.

I will not betray my own soul out of fear.

I will speak from my experience because I can’t speak for another.

I will brave the wilderness, and in doing so, I am willing to not meet anyone’s expectations of me.

And so it is.

Deck: The Spolia Tarot