There is No Such Thing as ‘Not Trans Enough’

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Sep 22 '20 | By Serenity | Views: 653 | Comments: 0
There is No Such Thing as ‘Not Trans Enough’

The gender-specific norms and expectations set up by society can wreak havoc on a trans person’s confidence and self-esteem. This is a common problem many transgender individuals face. They just end up thinking they are ‘not trans enough.


Let’s begin by clarifying that there is nothing like ‘not trans enough. If you feel like a woman, then that’s it really. You don’t need to strictly match the physical characteristics of a particular gender in order to belong to it. If you choose to undergo a medical procedure to develop the external attributes of a cis man or a woman, that’s totally your choice. But these external physical characteristics don’t define your identity.


If you are a trans woman, it’s the essence of femininity you carry in your heart. How you express it externally is your choice and prerogative. Similarly, if you feel like a man, you are a trans man. And you don’t need to go to ridiculous extents in order to conform to stereotypical standards of masculinity.


Transgender individuals often suffer from what is commonly known as ‘imposter syndrome. To put it simply, they feel that they do not quite fulfill the expectations of the identity that they are claiming and feel that they don’t deserve to belong there. They feel as if they are wrongfully claiming someone else’s identity. Imposter syndrome can lead to a lot of negativity and depression in a transgender person. They spend too much time thinking about their imagined inadequacies and deficiencies rather than just living life and being happy.


It becomes like a vicious circle in which all their focus is on how to match the societal expectations of a typical man or woman. In the process, they forget their unique identity and are always under undue stress to conform.


This article tells you about a few ways in which you can overcome the ‘imposter syndrome’ as a trans person.



Fall in Love with Yourself


Self-love is the most important step towards combating imposter syndrome. If you love yourself, you are too busy to think about other peoples’ opinions of your personality or way of life.


When you are seeking love through a trans dating site, you are seeking validation from someone. You want someone to like you and adore you. In the process, their opinion becomes so valuable to you that it can make or break your day. This is not to say that you should give up on dating! Of course, you should seek out a partner for romantic love. That’s a basic necessity of life. But at the same time, this should not become the be-all and end all of your life.


Fall in love with yourself. Make your personal well-being the most important project of your life. Constantly set short-term goals for self-improvement. For example, challenge yourself to lose 3-4 kgs of weight in a month. Set a goal to take greater care of your skin and improve your skin health in a certain stipulated time frame. If you hate a particular type of exercise routine, motivate yourself to go for it.


Once you start treating your personal well-being like a project, you won’t have time left for anything else. And all the negativity will just vanish.



Work On Your Self-Confidence


Confidence is the biggest asset anyone can have. There are people who are not so good-looking or competent but they have such high levels of confidence that you are spellbound by them. When they walk into a room, they can make everyone look at them just by the virtue of their self-confidence.


As a transgender person, have faith and confidence in your abilities. Even if your dressing isn’t that perfect, your voice isn’t that deep and baritone like as a trans man, people will ignore all these things if you are confident. When you walk into a room, have a subtle but convincing smile on your face. Always look into the eyes of people directly while talking. When you are listening to someone, your body language should signify interest. When you are in a social setting, take the initiative to strike a conversation. All these things speak of an impressive level of self-confidence.


Confidence helps you score high even when it comes to dating and relationships. When you are chatting with someone through a transsexual dating site, you got to know how o build their interest and take things further. A person with self-doubt and hesitation will just say some awkward things and then they won’t know what to say next. But a confident person would take the initiative to start and conversation and then follow it up with even more interesting anecdotes and stories.



Cultivate the Trait of Positive Thinking


Positive thinking sounds easy. It means to think positively so it’s easy, right.  But in reality, it’s a challenge to think in a positive manner. As human beings, our thinking and feeling patterns are predisposed towards reacting more strongly to negativity rather than positivity. Think about it. How many times do you really react to some positive news stories like some great discovery or invention, some great advancement in the field of medical science, etc? It’s also hard to find any positive news. Generally, we are surrounded by negative news all the time – bomb blasts, accidents, corruption scandals, and all that.


So as a transgender person, you have to cultivate the habit of positive thinking. When you get up in the morning, tell yourself every day that how it’s going to be a beautiful day and you look forward to it. Remind yourself of all your achievements and the good things you’ve accomplished for yourself and others.


Develop empathy. It’s amazing how empathy for others can result in an improved self-image and positive thinking in general. If you see an elderly person on the road struggling with their bags, make an offer to carry those for them. Make it a general habit to be more aware of your surroundings and help people whenever you can. This will surely open up your eyes to all that is good and positive inside you and outside of you.



Get to Know More About Various Trans Icons


One way to overcome ‘imposter syndrome is by getting to know more about various trans icons. Transgender people are making their presence felt in every field, be it cinema, art, entertainment, fashion, sports, politics, law, media, or any other area. Read up about various trans icons. Their positive life stories will certainly inspire you. You will learn about the importance of being original and unique rather than blindly following standards set by society.



Be Connected with the Transgender Community


It’s great to be connected with the wider transgender community. You could join a ‘transgender forum’ online and communicate with other trans individuals. You could also join a local group that takes up transgender issues and participate in their meetings.


This is a great way to expand your social circle, make some great friends and be more aware of your own identity in the process. When you are constantly in touch with other trans people and are regularly sharing experiences with them, you are less likely to doubt your identity.



Concentrate On Your Professional Goals


This is a great way to keep negativity and depression at bay. As a transgender person, it’s very important that you focus on your professional goals. When you are struggling with so many issues and trying to live out an identity that society is constantly trying to negate, it’s understandable that your professional life will suffer. But if you stay determined and concentrate on your professional goals, this can be therapeutic for your personal life.


Just as you set various goals for your personal life, do the same for your professional one. If you are in a field of work where one constantly needs to update their knowledge, take regular refresher courses. If there is a particular aspect of your work you need to improve, concentrate on that. Also, focus on your communication skills since these are very important for work.


As you focus more and more on your professional goals, your mind will become more rational and organized. And you won’t have any time or inclination for negativity or irrational thoughts.



Educate Others About Trans Issues


Give yourself the task of making your friends, family, and colleagues more aware of transgender issues. Talk to them, get to know their thinking, and then give them your perspective. Society has a lot of misconceptions about trans people. And a lot of these stereotypes exist because there is no awareness enough. This kind of brainstorming will help in creating that awareness.


Many transgender individuals are in a state of constant self-doubt about their identity because of societal stereotyping and expectations. Society knows little or nothing about trans people. So they try to fit into the binaries of male or female as defined by society and get anxious in the process. So it is important for every trans person to educate those known to him about trans issues. This will slowly lead to a change at the level of society and also strengthen his/her sense of identity as a trans man or woman.

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