As we grow, we get to realize how disturbing our world is especially when we reach that stage in our lives where everyone around us have made stacks of expectation slips in their mind about how we are going to live and even the success journey we have to travel. Especially when they get to see us during occasions, birthday celebrations, family gatherings, and reunions, the least thing we would expect to happen is to not be asked with questions regarding our career and our plans with our lives.
Who on earth does not get to feel that pressure brought to us by such circumstances? Who does not get pressured by the society?
I was once pressured by what the society wants me to become. Let’s admit it- it was too difficult to live by the standards your world has already set for you. Every move you make, every step you take, or even when you’re coming up with decisions, it feels like the world is watching over you. You are becoming too anxious about the world around you to the extent that you always take into consideration what other people would say about you and your choices. Before, I thought it was just normal to feel pressured especially when you see your friends and batchmates on social media conquering the world and championing their causes. There was always this feeling of anxiety and fear of getting left behind, as if you all were running the same race.
All along, I instilled in myself that it was just my way of motivating myself- by turning my desires and aspirations into reality through getting inspiration from the success stories of those whom I thought I was running a race with. Not until I figured out myself that it was not a competition between us; that I was never in a contest with them. I had come to realize that it was my own battle; that it was my own race I had to run and my own fight I had to win over.
This is something I am very grateful to have discovered within myself and through my experiences. I know that I am still far from the end of my journey, but I am happy I have come so far. That, I believe, is something my future self will thank me for. That finally I was able to figure things out- what stuff I’d love to pursue, which things I’d prioritize, and choices I would make for my own sake.
I also got to learn how to appreciate more my victories, of any sort, whether it’s from my career, my full time job, or even my passion. That every little progress is something worth celebrating. This also made me change my perspective when it comes to my own progress. Instead of stressing myself out about the things which go beyond my control, I learned how to accept what I cannot change and focus more on the things which I have full control of- doing the things which I know I am most passionate about and which is worth my time and efforts.
It has to be clear to everyone that this thinking is neither selfish by nature, nor an excuse to justify the little progress you have probably made so far. Because, a little progress is still a progress as what others say. It is just a way of telling and reminding everyone of the fact that we all have our own timeline. Not because everybody else is reaching greater heights and making a big progress doesn’t mean you have to. You need to learn how to accept that not all things happen within your time frame.
Whenever I get to see others reaping the fruits of their labor, bagging some achievements, and championing their causes, I always remind myself to be kind enough to celebrate with their success and to be happy with their wins, be it small or big.
I think that’s one of the most important lessons everyone needs to keep in mind- do not be pressured by what others have achieved, but rather be inspired by what your own journey has to offer you. After all, our goal is to outgrow what and who we were in the past.
Think of it this way, in every version of yourself which you outgrow springs up a stronger and better you. It is truly from the richness of your past experiences comes out more meaningful victories and milestones. It is never a sad moment when you had to outgrow your past self and choose to come out in full bloom. That is actually a manifestation that progress is there; that something is brewing for you.