We spend a very precious period in our lifetime trying to fit in according to what we think society wants us to be. We do not realize how special we are as an individual with our unique traits and personality.
This very special quote by ‘Oliver James’ says it all. Many people may feel pressure to fit in with the norms and expectations of society, whether it's in terms of appearance, behavior, or beliefs. However, this pressure to conform can be overwhelming and come at the cost of individuality and authenticity. It may feel sometimes that fitting in is all you are supposed to do in some situations but there is always a choice to be authentic. Trying to fit in may lead to feelings of dissatisfaction, unhappiness, and a lack of fulfillment.
On the other hand, embracing one's unique qualities and standing out can lead to a greater sense of self-confidence, happiness, and success. When you dare to be different and follow your path, you can discover your strengths and abilities, and ultimately achieve greater fulfillment and satisfaction in life.
It's important to remember that everyone has unique qualities and strengths that make them stand out from others. Rather than celebrating our unique individuality, we tend to hide it embarrassingly.
Embracing those differences and using them to your advantage can lead to greater success and happiness than simply trying to fit in with the crowd. Individuality refers to the unique characteristics, qualities, and traits that make a person distinct from others. It encompasses a person's personality, beliefs, values, talents, interests, and experiences.
Each person is born with their own unique set of genetic traits and predispositions, which can influence their physical appearance, cognitive abilities, and personality. However, individuality is also shaped by the social and cultural context in which a person grows up and lives, our family and the friends we surround ourselves with also play a very important part in one’s individual growth their unique personality.
Being a shadow under the societal traits may feel safe and comforting for the time being but it can never lead to the redemption we all search for in the long run. And in the process, societal behavior may give you a sense of achievement but that will always be fulfillment in a particular society as a whole, the achievement may not feel on an individual’s level.
Individuality is important because it allows people to express themselves authentically and pursue their own goals and interests, rather than simply conforming to societal expectations. Embracing one's individuality can lead to greater self-awareness, self-acceptance, and self-esteem. It can also encourage creativity, innovation, and diversity, which can benefit society as a whole.
And I still remember a poem I read in 9th standard by Robert Frost, "The Road Not Taken". It made a great difference in my life.
A stanza of that poem goes...
" I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. "
While it's important to respect and appreciate differences among individuals, it's also important to recognize our common humanity and to promote understanding and compassion towards others, regardless of their characteristics.