I’ve never been one to succumb to what other people thought or wanted. I’ve always been an individual; staying true to my morals and resisting social pressure. But sometimes, following through with this resistance can be easier said than done.
There is always so much pressure from society to “look” and “act” a certain way. Everything you do in life is always judged, by people you know and even by random strangers. There is always someone out there wanting to give their “2 cents” about who you are and how you should behave.
In the past, I’ve been criticised many times for being “too nice”. Friends have made me feel afraid to be myself. But in spite of this peer pressure, I continued to be the sort of person that always looked out for others. I wasn’t going to change myself for other people.
I’ve even had my morality tested before, by someone whose values differ to my own. I despise dishonesty; it is not within my character to lie to other people. But I’ve had a loved one LAUGH at me for refusing to lie to someone else.
But when I reached University, I discovered how important it was to be myself. When I “came out of my shell”, I found that I made longer-lasting friendships. And this made me realise that I didn’t need to change myself at all, because there were actually people out there who loved me for ME.
If I wasn’t the the “over-sensitive” person that I was once criticised for, I wouldn’t be the empathetic person that I am today. I wouldn’t be the sort of person who would stay up all night to make someone feel better, I wouldn’t be a mother who knows exactly how their child feels, I wouldn’t be a wife that cares how her husband feels when he’s down. And I’m proud to say that I AM all those things.
Don’t let others criticise the morals that you abide by; don’t let them laugh at you for doing “what’s right”. Do what feels right for YOU. At the end of the day, you are the one dealing with the consequences. YOU are the one who has to look at themselves in the mirror. YOU are the one who has to sleep at night.
And YOU are the only person who can truly feel proud of who they are.
Thuy Le (formerly known as Thuy Yau) is a freelance writer and Youth Work graduate living in Perth, Australia. She loves to share her own personal experiences about overcoming adversity, as she believes that human beings are more capable than they realise. She writes to make a positive difference in the world and to inspire others to learn from themselves and their own experiences. Her writing has been discussed on radio, won writing contests, appeared on The Huffington Post UK and major Australian sites such as news.com.au, SMH, Kidspot and Essential Kids. She is currently writing her first book.