Social media is so love/hate for me.
For instance, I hate that people cause and feed into drama and put it “on blast,” if you will. Listen, I understand you need to vent, but seriously, get a fucking diary or unload to your friends [if you have any]. Nobody else needs to get involved in something that is none of their business.
However, on the flip side, one of the things I love about social media is that there are always links to news articles or surveys or things of that nature that I love to read and review.
Last night a friend on Facebook posted a link to an article from the Business Insider about improving and focusing on thyself [to read the article, click here]. And of course I was drawn to it like a moth to a flame. If you follow my blog you know that I am extremely passionate about the topic [and implementation] of bettering yourself. And I really feel like this has been one of the best articles I’ve come across, to date, as far as what you need to focus on at a certain age.
When you’re in your early twenties, life is really all about self discovery. So few of us really know who we are before we’re of a legal age [and I would say this mostly applies to Americans, which is ironic, since our country is so fond of it’s “land of the free” ways, and yet we have so few freedoms until 18, 21 and 25]. When we’re young, we all want to be popular and well-liked [well, most of us]. We do things like sneak out of our houses and tee-pee people’s homes and soap the local fountains because we think people will like us more. Because society tells us that it’s “the cool thing to do.” And then after high school we realize that all of that crap was so dumb and juvenile and then panic sets in because, holy shit, who the hell are we now? What do we do to meet people and get with the “in” crowd? And, holy shit, there is no “in” crowd because we are in college or we have a job and now it’s every man for himself. So we drink and do drugs because it puts down our walls and we think that this will help us to meet people – and we make bonds with people we have nothing in common with because, frankly, the only thing we actually have in common is that we’ve downed several cocktails.
Alas, the path to self discovery. And so many of us lose sight of who we are in the mix of all of this. We get used to defining ourselves based off of who we are with other people, or what society tells us we should be doing, and we know deep down in our hearts that it’s not right.
I have never been somebody who needs somebody else. Truly, if anybody designed the “third wheel,” it was me. I literally third wheeled it all through my youth. And I never actually minded. It taught me a great deal about reading other people and, most importantly, it taught me so much about myself.
Do you know who you are as a solo, individual human? Or is your being defined by your significant other?
I know too many people [mostly women but a few men as well] that are so lost in life because the minute they find themselves alone [which is often, because nobody wants to date somebody who has no clue who they are] they go completely insane and jump into the arms of the next person who crosses their path. And the vicious cycle continues..
The article I read explains that this sort of behavior is completely acceptable in our teens and twenties, but, by the time we reach our thirties, we should know who we are and we shouldn’t have this wild mustang mentality any longer. It’s time to lock down a real life and focus on being the best person you can be.
I am two years shy of thirty [thank god – I cannot wait to get out of this dreadful decade], and already I am starting to implement some of the things outlined in the article. And I love that each of the ten bullet points is all about improving yourself and yourself alone. BUT, the article doesn’t assume that you’re alone; in fact, everything the writer talks about can be improved upon while simultaneously being in a relationship. They are things that, if you are in a relationship, you can both work on and encourage each other on.
But the bottom line is, at some point you have to grow up. The article basically gives you a soft timeline. It gives you thirty years to fuck off. That seems like plenty of time to get it out of your system, don’t you think? And in thirty years, don’t you want to know who you are and be comfortable with that? In sense, it actually changes the rules that society has practically embedded in stone – that we must own a home, be married and have our act together the minute we graduate college. The article is giving us an additional eight years to continue our youth and sow our wild oats, if you will.
Obviously this is not something that everybody will be able [or want] to abide by. Some people will never know who they are. Life will be a constant cycle of jumping from one “Mr. Right” to the next, and from one group of friends to another. Others will have their act together right out of school, with a great job and a college sweetheart and a white picket fence.
And while we are all so drastically different from one another, we do all have one thing in common: the power to change. The power to change our lives; the power to see the world differently; the power to make decisions because they’re the right decisions, not necessarily the ones we want; and, most importantly, the power of our minds – the will to actually change and improve. Because, as I’ve stated in many of my posts, the only person standing in your way is yourself.