Some people expect you to fail. Do not succumb to anyone’s negative expectations of you. –  Folashade Ayanwale

When I look back at my time in school and in most of my youth, I often noticed a pattern when it came to my peers and my overall sense of worth and happiness. How some people expect you to fail, and the feeling that in some way, I’m not living to my true potential or ideal self due to peer pressure and societal expectations which have become part of our core essence and general lifestyle. I would often look at myself in the mirror and wonder who I really was. Am I really living the way I want to live or based on what other people expect of me?

While i agree to an extent that having order in the world is warranted in order to help make society balanced and in control, the real problem occurs when the actual person aligns their very core identity to that way of life, without realizing or taking a second to evaluate whether it’s in line with who they really are.

There are many examples of this – Be it an unbalanced marriage, a strict institution, a religious sect, or a friendship involving peer pressure and ‘fitting in with the crowd’.

It wasn’t really evident to me at the time that part of why I lacked so much confidence was because I literally did not know who I was. And this was no coincidence due to the above issues and in wanting to fit in and be part of something. This became a necessity due to my lack of confidence and not really understanding that what I was really looking for was a solid identity.

As humans, we all want to naturally be a part of something. Getting rejected and dismissed is perhaps the very thing that prevents us from wanting to go our own way and become unique. It soon becomes evident that doing and being someone different isn’t something that society and people in general hold in great regard, for a number of reasons –

1) Not liking change due to challenging beliefs and norms.

2) Forcing people to change their way of thinking and understanding which in most cases, is very linear.

If we are to understand our very essence as human beings, it soon becomes obvious that we simply cannot be put into small boxes. The idea of being a certain way and doing a certain thing in a particular order soon starts to make sense that we’re simply not designed to be that way as evolving humans. And what usually results is a very unhealthy and unbalanced way of life, resulting in despair, lack of confidence, and a poor identity.

What’s interesting is what happens when someone decides to evolve and move away from this way of life.

In order to change and become a better person, you will have to face many obstacles along the way. Many people will disagree with you, mock you, challenge you, and encourage you that you’re making a mistake. You will even lose friends along the way as you start to evolve and become a different and more improved version of yourself.

But why does this happen?

While I can’t honestly explain this phenomenon. What I can say based on my logical understanding is as follows –

1) Many people simply do not want their beliefs to be challenged directly by someone who’s consistently shattering their way of thinking.

2) Perhaps you’re also challenging the very fact that you’re making them see their true laziness by not taking action and instead, using their lame beliefs as excuses for not making changes in their own life.

Whatever the reason may be. It’s a very difficult thing to have to deal with when attempting to change. Particularly when it involves close friends and family.

I for one think that in order to change, all of this is necessary in order to realize that what other people think about you and your circumstances doesn’t really matter and will directly affect your confidence in a positive way.

Understand that with every change in the world, there is always imbalance, which eventually stabilizes as more and more people start to become positively affected. All it takes is a firm belief and a desire to change without the need for external approval.

It is, after all, a life that only you can claim for yourself in order to be completely happy.

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Onder Hassan
Onder Hassan

Onder is the founder of Dawn of Change. He spends most of his time in the discovery of his own potential, building his self-confidence and using his experiences to share and teach others how to do the same.