Why do people feel this overwhelming need to fit in? Why are other people’s opinions so important to us? People are willing to change their appearance, pretend to like things they don’t and go along with ideas that they know are bad; because the alternative is so much worse. The most obvious form of this is playground bullying, but peer pressure is something that seeps into our lives, often without us realising what we’re doing. People are always giving us their opinion on every aspect of our lives – our clothes, our taste in music, the opportunities we choose to take and the ones we don’t. And sometimes it’s good to have other’s people’s advice on important matters – but it’s never ok to follow this advice when you don’t want to. And often, people don’t even offer advice, but rather just snide comments and opinions on things that don’t concern them – and this plants doubt in your mind, doubts about your choices, your abilities, your chances at success.
So why do we care? Because it is human nature to want to fit in, to be accepted and liked by our peers. No one wants to feel alone, an outcast for simply being their self. We crave human contact and companionship, and are therefore often willing to sacrifice in order to get this. We seek advice because we realise that we don’t know it all – but just remember, neither does anyone else.
So here’s the important bit – why would you want to be friends with people who don’t like you for you? Why does their opinion matter, when they are clearly so close-minded that they cannot appreciate diversity within humanity, that they believe they are always right? No one is perfect, no one has everything figured out. So stop listening to people who tell you that you can’t achieve what you want. Stop listening to people who tell you that you have to change. Because what do they know? Find the people who appreciate you for yourself. Prove the doubters wrong. Make choices based on what will make you happy. Don’t waste time on people that don’t matter, people who aren’t looking out for you. Embrace the things that make you different. Figure out who you are and who you want to be. Know when it’s ok to have some fun, to do things that are crazy and stupid. Make the most of life. And never, ever apologise for being yourself.
Song: Reckless – You Me At Six