Or better yet, embrace them.

As humans, we will never be perfect beings. To me, this is a great thing. It makes life diverse and beautiful and challenging. It also makes it pointless to constantly compare ourselves to others. It makes more sense to take an honest assessment of ourselves, our strengths and our limitations, and determine the best fit for our own lives. We are all different, and thus, won’t follow the same paths in life.

Growing up, most of us are told that if we do this or do that and achieve this or achieve that, we will be happy. We set specific goals, usually ones influenced by the people closest to us and the society surrounding us, and once we reach those goals, we expect that we will find a happiness that lasts forever. We graduated with honors. We finally got that raise or promotion we’ve been working for. We married, had children, and bought a nice house, in a good neighborhood, where we spend our weekends with friends and family living the good life.

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with wanting any of this. If it truly makes you happy, carry on! The point I’m hoping to make here is that we need to develop a life for ourselves, not one that is based on the expectations of other people, or even the expectations of our own recent history. Otherwise, we end up questioning if there’s something wrong with us.

I think it’s good to listen to constructive criticism, but we need to stop allowing other people to tell us what we should and shouldn’t be doing and begin to listen to ourselves. It’s okay to want or need something different than the next person, and there’s nothing wrong with you because of it.

Change is the only constant in life. That’s why we need to learn to adapt and re-adapt as we go along. Happiness itself ebbs and flows, and sometimes the things that make us happy will change as a result. You’re allowed to change your mind if what used to make you happy no longer feels right. Just try to make sure you’re doing it for the right reasons. For instance, avoid making decisions or changes based on fear. And most importantly, try not to block out the important people in your life. They are there to help you if you’ll let them. Keep those lines of communication open!


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