This statement can be a bit confronting. Firstly, what is normal? Normal will vary depending on who you speak to. Secondly, what is wrong with being normal?
Normal is something that is defined by groups of people. In a group of friends there will be one definition of normal. A group of work colleagues will have another definition. A community will have another definition. A different community will have another definition. There may well be an overlap in the definitions but each will be individual and will be influenced by cultural beliefs and people’s experiences.
So what did Jung mean by this statement?
He spoke in his writings about people finding their true self. Once they had found their true self they were to live according to that true self. To live in your true self means to be yourself, which is rarely normal. Normal is conforming to expectations of others. It does not involve being who you truly are.
A lot of people who come to see me are miserable with their lives. They are not living their lives according to what they really want. Instead they are living life according to what other people expect of them. That is certainly a safe way to live. But it is ultimately unsatisfying and leads to depression.
Living a fulfilled life means living life according to your true self. A fulfilled life is seen as being the mark of success. Striving to fit in and be seen as ‘normal’ by your group is the way to live un unfilled life. Therefore, striving to be normal is the way to lead a life that is unsuccessful.
Many people struggle to change the way they live their lives. They stick to practices, jobs, locations they don’t like. Change is too hard, too scary, to try. So they remain stuck in places where they are unhappy. Ultimately it impacts every aspect of their lives.
I frequently coach people through changes in their lives. It can be very helpful to get help to make those changes. If you would like me to help you please contact me on 0409396608 or firstname.lastname@example.org