Passion Over Pride: Why I'd Rather Be Over The Top Than Boring As Hell

by Lauren Martin

Hello, my name is Lauren, and I am OTT.

For a long time, I thought I had a problem. I mean a real problem. I was made to feel insecure, out of control and, for a long period, totally insane.

I was given treatment along with giant doses of criticism to try and cure the symptoms. This was a very serious matter. According to friends and family, I had over-the-top syndrome.

What is over-the-top syndrome? According to the diagnosis, the symptoms include overzealousness, passion and exaggeration. No, it’s not contagious they would say. It’s just dangerous.

Dangerous? Yes. You run the risk of not just embarrassing yourself but no one ever taking you seriously. You’re over-the-top all the time! It’s going to kill you.

For awhile, I tried to change. I worked hard at it. I sat in rooms and didn’t speak.

When groups of my friends were talking, I reminded myself to only speak when spoken to. When I was around my family, I curbed my spontaneous nature and also only spoke when spoken to.

And then, I realized something: I had cured my one “problem” only to pick up another -- only I didn’t want this disease. This disease was widespread and totally untreatable.

I didn’t want this. Oh, no. You can’t cure boring-as-hell!

I’d rather lose my fingers than my arm. I’d rather be shunned for who I am then numb myself down for who I’m not. I’m not trying to be part of this club. No sir.

I’m sorry if I’m too loud, or brash or excessive, but in my unprofessional opinion, it’s way better to be a little too much of something than absolutely none of nothing.

I can’t live my life on the sidelines, walking around numb and completely uninterested. I can’t give up my passions and my flair just because you can’t handle it. I’m living with my diagnosis, and I’m proud to be OTT.

I’d rather spark debate than listen to it

Boring people are always the first to judge but never the first to put themselves out there. It’s the excited, spontaneous and OTTs who will risk embarrassment and vulnerability for the good of the group.

We’re the ones who take chances, usually for the sole benefit of making everyone a little less uncomfortable. It’s the OTTs who are breaking the awkward silence the boring people can’t help but create.

I’d rather be remembered for being loud than forgotten for being soft

One symptom of OTT is the necessity to be heard. It’s not out of narcissism or delusion but because we have things to say. We’re excited and want to share our feelings.

Of course, this runs the risk of a few negative opinions about our need for attention and “show stealing” nature, but hey, we’d rather be in the show than complaining about it.

I'd rather create the fun than simply partake in it

OTTs aren’t about following the herd; they’re about leading it. Their spontaneous and excited nature makes them natural-born leaders.

While there are always going to be uninterested followers, at least we have control over where we're headed.

Because I'd rather have every day be different than live life the same

Yes, OTTs may exaggerate and emphasize, but that’s only because we’re trying to make the best of every boring conversation, situation and mediocre lunch hour.

What’s the harm in trying to entertain you? Why is it worse to share a loud, hilarious story than to not tell one at all?

I'd rather rack up the regrets than worry about having any

There are two types of people in this world: the ones who dance at parties and the ones who sit there, trying to look good.

OTTs understand it’s better to regret trying than regret never knowing. Life is too damn short to avoid regrets for the sake of a clean slate.

What’s the point of getting all dressed up only to worry about stains and tears? The point of life is to get messy and enjoy the party, not sit in the corner looking pretty and bored.

I’d rather make history than read someone else's story

Even if my history is messy, and sloppy and all over the place, at least I did something.

The thing about boring people is they’re content to just read about everyone else, instead of going out there and making their own story.

Even if OTTs don’t realize it, they’re out there every day adding pages to their book.

I’d rather have passion than pride

I’d rather be able to get excited about something than not be able to get excited about anything.

Life is about finding passions and sharing them. It’s about being exhilarated and inspired, not about being too cool for everything.

There is nothing more beautiful than watching someone talk about his or her passions and nothing more boring than watching your pride.