On Normal

What is normal? It’s that which adheres to prevailing norms. Norms vary from place to place, context to context. When your evolving ideologies and practices cause you to feel not normal (abnormal), that’s just an indication that they are adhering less and less to the prevailing norms around you. Feeling not normal can be its own sort of stress, I suppose, so if you want to feel “normal” again, what can you do? Either you can devolve your ideologies and practices back to adherence, or you can change your environment, your context. Personally, I’ve done the latter by increasingly surrounding myself with other voluntaryists and radical unschoolers. I feel less not normal than I used to, and I increasingly view those outside these groups as abnormal (and a bit crazy, too!). Less stress, and more happiness, for me. Give it a try. And that’s today’s two cents.


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Founder and editor of Everything-Voluntary.com and UnschoolingDads.com, Skyler is a husband and unschooling father of three beautiful children. His writings include the column series “One Voluntaryist’s Perspective” and “One Improved Unit,” and blog series “Two Cents“. Skyler also wrote the books No Hitting! and Toward a Free Society, and edited the books Everything Voluntary and Unschooling Dads. You can hear Skyler chatting away on his podcasts, Everything Voluntary and Thinking & Doing.