Do I need to change?
When should I change?
Or, why should I even change? Why can’t I be myself? Or, can I be?
Everyone of you must have gone through these sort of wonders, here and there, especially when others stress you to change. And then, you have heard many times the line “BE YOURSELF,” and that sounds so right but others can’t take your true self and expect you to change, and you get confused now, who is right.
That confusion is because you probably have not understood that two-word philosophy itself. To begin with, put yourself into this:
Mr. John is a complete asshole. He is rude, he does not care about others feeling. He actually enjoys seeing people suffer. He can’t stick to one relationship for long. He smokes, he drinks. All in all, he is a man that barely anyone likes to befriend or date.
Now, ask yourself, should Mr. John remain as he is or change?
If your answer is he should change, then you are wrong. You are no different than people who expects you to change. “John is a complete asshole, he is rude, bla bla bla,” that’s per whose definition? Based on whose standard? He is not committing any crime, cops is not behind him, he is not harming anyone. He is just living his life as it pleases him, WHY SHOULD HE CHANGE? Because no one could fit in his life either as a friend or a date?
Hope you got the point. So, let’s jump into BE YOURSELF
Be yourself is a philosophy rooted to individualism. Individualism is the moral stance, political philosophy, ideology, or social outlook that emphasizes the moral worth of the individual. Individualists promote the exercise of one’s goals and desires and so value independence and self-reliance and advocate that interests of the individual should achieve precedence over the state or a social group, while opposing external interference upon one’s own interests by society or institutions such as the government.
The whole idea behind the BE YOURSELF is that you owe your own shit. Good or bad, you live the consequences. Humans by nature change per the situation and circumstances or desires and wants. When it truly happens so, you will change anyway. If you don’t, nature will take care of you anyway. But until then being yourself is the key, because when you remain as you are, first you signal out your true self to others, making others life easy to decide about you. Secondly, you live the process and that’s the most comforting, most joyful and most peaceful state.
You don’t need to change a thing in you unless you truly desire so. If you are fat, be yourself. If you are introvert, be yourself. If you are jerk, be yourself. If you are a geek, be yourself. Don’t try to change to fit in or accepted.
Yes, you may lose people from your life who does not like your true self. But hey, someone of your type will join you anyway. Be yourself.
What if those people are my family, my relatives, my loved ones.
Well, that’s a tough choice you need to make. Either be yourself and let them decide what to do with you. Or, you fit into their expectation and standard and live and act per them. Which option will you choose?
In short, BE YOURSELF, is a philosophy that tells you to accept yourself the way you are and act and present yourself accordingly and not try to be someone you are not.
Opinion Vs Fact: Things to understand while communicating
Once, I was in a camp designed to train youths on liberty, freedom, free-market, and governance. Four foreign nationals were conducting the class. There were interactions, discussions and Q&A sessions. There were many instances where the foreigners would ask questions about Nepal, and students would answer them, and sometimes answers used to be totally exaggerated one or sometimes completely untrue, but then those foreigners would believe them anyway as if is true. Stepping onto the shoes of those foreigners, I surely would have found Nepal a horrible place to live in based on the answers and views shared by Nepalese in the class.
I still remember the Human Rights report during the Madhesh andolan and how that irked many people then. I remember an article written in response to the report stating “many times, western media and organisations cover Nepal and build their views plainly based on correspondents living in New Delhi or only by interviewing opinion leaders from Kathmandu.” I also remember one of the videos by Al Jazeera and how that actually shaped views of others regarding Madhesh Andolan.
What can we learn from these incidences and observations is that we often end up spreading false messages or half truth, about our country and people, especially in crisis-hit time. I suppose it’s same everywhere in developing society. So, how do we end up spreading false messages? It’s in our lack of communication skills. There is something else.
When we are telling something to somebody about our country or government or an incident, we are either expressing
1. Our opinion, OR.
2. Telling the fact.
Opinion is what you feel, what you think. Fact is something that has been proven, is backed by evidence, or a conclusion from an extensive research. People generally don’t take opinion that seriously but take facts quite seriously. What happens when you express your opinion in a tone of fact-telling? People will take that seriously as if is a truth.
Let’s put it in example.
“Nepal is a very highly corrupted country. Everyone is corrupted here. You can buy anyone for money.” This statement sounds like a fact.
” I think, Nepal is a very highly corrupted country. To me, everyone seems corrupted here. I even think you can buy anyone for money. That’s just my opinion though.” This statement sounds pretty much an opinion.
Could you see the difference?? That “I think” makes a whole difference.
So, how an opinion should be expressed and not make it sound like fact telling? It’s very simple. You begin or end a sentence with “in my opinion” or “I think.”
I get to read many comments, I get to hear many stories, get to observe many interactions, and I have been noticing everywhere that we don’t know how to express our opinion and how to put facts. We just talk. The problem is not just in youth. It’s in everyone. It’s in politicians, it’s in media, it’s in streets, it’s in home. Basically, it’s in our culture.
You are entitled to your opinion. But you are not entitled to your own facts.
I understand, we cannot be always politically and technically correct, but that should not be an excuse when representing your group or country and talking to outsiders or talking to media. If you fail to rightly express your opinion, your opinion can be taken as FACTS. Eventually, we may end up establishing an opinion as a fact.
That’s what has happened to us. We mix up opinion with facts. We claim to know things about government without even knowing in true sense. We claim to know things about people without even knowing in true sense. We claim to know about many things without even knowing in true sense. Foreigners may not know that. Children for sure can’t know that. Students may not know that. Online users, readers and viewers, may not know that. They all will go home thinking they have learned about something because you said so. “They told in TV bla bla bla…”
Look around!! Because of the very same culture, there are all kinds of nonsense taken as facts.
Daniel Patrick Moynihan, an American sociologist, once rightly said “You are entitled to your opinion. But you are not entitled to your own facts.” Many people here don’t get that. You please don’t be that. When you are expressing your opinion, make it sound like an opinion and not a fact.
Don’t settle quick
If you are in your early 20s, you are young. You have at least another 5 years to worry less about finance and familial responsibilities. See? This is not the time for you to run for money, to run for car and house. The time will come that you will have no option but to run for those things. You will be stuck with familial and social responsibilities, even if you don’t want to. BUT, THIS IS NOT THE TIME.
This is the time to know people, to try, to experiment, to explore. The energy that you have at this age bracket won’t be same 5 years from now. You will realize that only when you are nearing your 30. So, make best use of the energy that you have. not to live like a 30-year-old person but like a 22-year-old, as you are. Your 30-year-old life anyway is there waiting for you. But hey! your 22-year-old life won’t be there.
So, live your 20s life now. Don’t waste it by living your 30s life, just to live the same life 5 years from now.
This is the time for you to join new circle, new people, join start-ups, try building things, try creating things, try winning deals, try ruling markets, try this, try that, try everything. Even if it does not work out, you are young and you will be alright; not like in 30s, when you mess up, your chance to grow further shrinks by half.
So I say, don’t look for job in Facebook, job in Google, job in CG or NCell or NTC or some big corporate house, where you would feel secure, would earn better. Instead, look for job in start-ups, and make it next Facebook or Google or CG or NCell. If you want to try your own, that’s even better. How much ever you give for big companies, you will be still only known as employee. When you give your best for start-ups, you will be known as founding team, founding member. When the start-ups become big, your name will be in its history book, you pics will be in companies wall.
That’s the beauty of working with start-ups. You are just in your 20s, I repeat, don’t run for money. Run for a team that is worth investing your time and energy up on, that you look back 5 years from now and shout “YES! WE MADE IT.” That sense of achievement, you will never feel in big companies nor job abroad, in same manner as you would feel when turning start-ups to next Facebook or Apple or another big corp.
One life, don’t waste it. One youthfulness, don’t settle too quick.
People don’t forget the way you made them feel
We often think “once everything becomes alright, all the bad things and relationships will be fixed as well.” Some of us have a habit of not picking up calls when in middle of something even if is being called many times thinking “will call later and make things alright” or “anyway am meeting the caller in the evening, I will talk then”
Or, we avoid talks or contacts with some people that we are supposed to pay back or deliver a commitment thinking “will talk once am able to pay back or deliver the commitment.”
Later, we often manage to pay or deliver or meet them, but things don’t remain same from there. We turn out to be a bad person though we are good deep inside, though we didn’t cheat or betray, in the end. Still people ignore us, friends and relatives set a distance from us; they don’t trust us and we wonder “what did I do??”
WHAT DID WE DO? we made people go through unpleasant emotions. And those people don’t want to go through that emotions again. So, instead of calling hundred times and going through “WHERE THE HELL ARE YOU?” with that angry unpleasant feeling, they learn to not call you and avoid the unpleasant emotion. Instead of giving you money, and go through “WILL HE EVEN RETURN THE MONEY?” the anxious feeling, they learn to not give you money in first place and avoid the unpleasant emotion.
Same goes in romantic relationship. That’s how once-a-great relationship dies off without a clue. Deep inside, it’s because of the same reason stated above.
Many good people by heart has messed up in interpersonal relationship (ghar-samaj bevahar) simply because of this one little thing that they could not consider and understand.
Humans are very easy animal if you rightly understand their pleasure-seeking nature and tendency to avoid/reject unpleasant emotions and activities. If you don’t want others to keep a distance from your life, don’t feed them or push them to unpleasant emotions and activities.
People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
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