If you are confident, they will say you are arrogant.
If you are deliberate, they will say you are too sure of yourself.
If you have a sense of purpose, they will say you are self-absorbed.
If you know who you are, they will ask, “Who are you, anyway?”
If you believe in kindness and compassion, they will say you are naïve.
If you are a dreamer, they will say “join the real world.”
If you are a rebel, they will try to shut you down.
The instructions include:
rein it in
slow it down
wait it out
pull it back
take your time
play it safe
But you will know:
They are envious because they want what you have.
They are afraid of change even as they crave it.
They are projecting their own regret into resentment of you.
It’s not all bad news: some of them will sort themselves out and end up joining you. Because you are a good person and have had plenty of false starts of your own, you’ll understand and welcome them warmly. We’ve missed you! you’ll say. It’s about time you made it.
As for the others, well, you will remember what Gandhi said:
“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”