March to the beat of your own drum! On this the twelfth day of Christmas, the day where supposedly someone gave their true love twelve drummers drumming, I’m encouraging you to develop your own rhythm and march to it. In other words, live your own authentic life.
“Historically, musicians know what it is like to be outside the norm – walking the high wire without a safety net. Our experience is not so different from those who march to the beat of different drummers.” This can be quite a scary thought but it worked out well for the speaker, Billy Joel, and I truly believe it can work out for you as well.
How can you tell if you are marching to the beat of your own drum? That that make their own rhythmic way through life are not content to simply follow the status quo. They question the reasons for following trends and determine if it works for them. They can respect authority but do not do so blindly, questioning those in authority and holding them accountable.
Such people are passionate about learning and like to look at an issue from both sides. They are usually happy to debate either side of an issue which sometimes leads others into thinking they are wishy washy or perhaps a wee bit insane. Seldom bored, they thrive on input but limit what they receive from social media sites. They are always refining and rethinking a subject and are not afraid to change their mind. After all, it takes courage to think you might not have formed a complete opinion or that your opinion needs altering.
So how do we start marching to the beat of our own drum? We stop comparing ourselves to others. Put twelve drummers together and no two drummers, although playing the same cadences, are going to be identical. They are all going to believe in their abilities, however, and listen to each other. Belief in one’s self and remembering to listen to others is paramount to finding one’s own voice.
The best thing you have to offer is yourself. You are a gift to the world. By finding one’s own beat and marching to it, you are able to maximize your gifts and use them to their best advantage. Never change to conform. That diminishes who you are. As Henry David Thoreau once said: “If a man loses pace with his companions perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured, or far away.” In other words, live your own authentic life.