Do What Society Tells You
Are you living a life that you want to live, or one that others expect of you? This is a very thought provoking question that has been haunting me ever since I had first heard it. Society tells us so many things – so many certain ways to live our lives.
Pink is for baby girls, and shades of blue are for boys. Little girls are also only supposed to play with dolls, while little boys are to stick with their toy trucks and mud. Everyone is assigned to their designated cliques in high school, and immediately following, we are expected to know exactly where to go for college and what career path to take.
We graduate with a degree from an accredited school and land a job in our field. The love of our life comes along, proposes, and then we are married and living in the perfect little suburban home.
Babies come along and the cycle begins all over again. All the while on our journey there are further expectations for men and women.
Women should be a certain size, wear their hair a certain way, and be expected to do all the housework. Women should be feminine and carry that perfect and ideal motherly instinct. They should be stay-at-home moms, because women, of course, can’t have successful careers and take care of the kids.
Men are the breadwinners. They are expected to say yes to the guys for drinks after work to advance in their career and prove they are a tough guy. They should be muscular and know how to fix any broken appliance in the house. They should help out around the house by fixing things and mowing the lawn, because those are manly jobs.
No, no, no and no.
Why should we be expected to fit a stereotype or a mold that society has created for us? Why should we be expected to do anything other than what makes us happy? Why?
I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. And I may never figure it out, as is common with most adults. This is normal and nobody should be made to feel bad because of this.
Sometimes we don’t know what career path to take. Some of us may want to travel instead of going to college and finding a job. Some will marry young or not marry at all. Some of us may want to be a stay-at-home parent and work, and then some may just want to be with the kids and leave the corporate world behind. Then there may be others who don’t want to have kids at all.
And sometimes boys actually like pink and girls just want to get muddy. This is all okay.
If there are people in your school, workplace, or just in your life that are holding you back from learning and growing as an individual, then you don’t need to associate with those people, and it’s time to move on. Whatever you do in your personal or professional life should be whatever you want it to be.
Sometimes there are days when I don’t even know who I am supposed to be or where I am going in life. But I do have dreams and I know what I love to do: travel and explore new places with my husband, camp with my family, create new things, participate in races, take photographs, read and write, play with my puppies, taste new foods, and enjoy time with friends. Just to name a few.
My mind and my interests may be all over the place, the majority of the time, and I don’t know where I see myself in five years. But I do know that I’m doing the things that make me happy, and I’m surrounding myself with the people that I love. This is how I want to live. I shouldn’t be made to feel bad if I’m doing something other than what is “expected” of me based on the “rules of society.”
Life is too short to be anything but happy. Do what you want to do and be who you want to be. Don’t do what society tells you. Defy the odds and break free of expectations and stereotypes. We’ve only got one life to live – live it how you want.