Think back to when you learned about "one fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish." Think back to when you discovered green eggs and ham can be eaten for breakfast or learned that the cat wore a hat. Think back to when Horton heard a Who or a Grinch tried to steal Christmas.
Then remember Dr. Seuss' teaching, "be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."
In our world today we are being introduced to "alternative facts." Are alternative facts real facts or made-up facts? When Lily Tomlin mesmerized the world as Edith Ann, we learned that "the truth can be made up, if you know how."
So, what is true and what is alternative? If facts are facts and if there is no such thing as alternative facts, then is there such as thing as an alternative lifestyle? Is a lifestyle a lifestyle?
Down through history we have learned about alternative lifestyles. Whether it was polygamy, cults, cross dressing, homosexuality, bisexuality, transgender, communes, or non-traditional religions, if someone did not agree with another person's lifestyle, that lifestyle was considered an alternative lifestyle.
I contend there is no such thing as an alternative lifestyle.
A lifestyle is a lifestyle. Each one of us must own our lifestyle.
The US was founded on the basic principle to hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.
By that definition alone, there is only one lifestyle. And, that lifestyle centers around one's pursuit of happiness.
Dr. Seuss taught us to be who we are. That means each one of us decides our own lifestyle, our own journey. You are challenged to live your life by your own design. If someone disagrees or labels you as living alternatively, that is a definition by their design. They must own that judgment. Those who accept you for you and applaud your confidence and originality are the ones in your life that really matters.
Journeying down the road less traveled is not the easiest route, but often the most scenic and memorable. The most traveled expressways have the most congestion. The fastest route to a destination often requires a toll. The journey you design is the journey you must own.
Be who you are and say what you feel, for those who matter don't mind.
Embrace your originality.
Embrace and define your lifestyle.
bart is a nationally known, sought-after motivational speaker, author, blogger, personal coach, trainer, entrepreneur, and major advocate of the theatre community.
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