If Dr. King had decided to follow the status quo, I don’t know where we’d be today. Breaking away from societal norms takes extreme courage. I remember a time in my life when I was afraid do anything that might make me stand out or be seen as different from everyone around me. I was never happy following the crowd, but was always too afraid to break away and do my own thing. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become less concerned about the opinions of others and more concerned about the opinion I have of myself.
Deciding to march to the beat of my own drum and worry less about what others thought, was one of the best decisions I’ve made so far. It can be hard to make choices that you can be judged for, but doing what’s fitting for you is what matters most.
Don’t let the opinions of others dictate your actions
This is something I really struggled with. Whether it was opinions of friends, family, or even just acquaintances, I always wanted people to see me in a certain light. But, no matter how hard you try, you’re not always going to please everyone. People will always have an opinion on whatever you decide to do, so why not do what you feel is right regardless? Imagine if some of the people we admire most focused on everyone’s opinions about them. I doubt they would be where they are today, or would have made the progress they did. Which brings me to my next point…
Success does not come from comfort
Following the crowd is definitely a form of staying within your comfort zone, and staying in your comfort zone stifles success. Deviating from the crowd can open your creativity and allow you to feel more free to pursue goals and dreams you felt you couldn’t before. Even though following the crowd can sometimes be the easiest option, going out on your own can expose you to endless possibilities.
As twenty-somethings, it can be hard to find your own way. It’s a confusing time where we’re not only trying to find our way through life, but also trying to find ourselves. But how can we find ourselves if we remain lost in a crowd? The only way to find out is to take a chance and march to the beat of our own drums.
“There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must take it because conscience tells him it is right.”
-Martin Luther King Jr.