Anyone who lives in a world of organized chaos recognizes how important it is to divide one’s junkyard of thoughts into achievable/recognizable chunks. Scribbling work notes on the folds of your brain or tapping grocery items on your shiny Smartphone is second nature to you. Along comes an article starting with a finite, doable number (25 is a favourite) and you are hooked! You rejoice if your man manifests all of the ‘10 WAYS TO KNOW YOU ARE DATING A REAL MAN’ and fidget if you haven’t done any of the ‘25 THINGS YOU OUGHT TO DO BEFORE YOU ARE 25’. Comparisons and self assurances – we LOVE them! So you smirk, you share, and you score yourself and others.
But hang on a minute. Are you a cow chewing grass in a herd in a meadow, scoring yourself so seriously against such obvious yardsticks? You are HUMAN, you are COMPLEX and you are UNIQUE. You have your own treasure trove of emotions, characteristics and experiences – you have your own journey. Trying to mould them or your world into generic clichés dissolves the complexity of your personality to that of a cow’s. Moo!
The recent trends on social networking sites such as Facebook indicate that there is some sort of satisfaction or lesson we want to share with each other by posting these articles. Its easy to see why – we want to recognize and learn from behavioural patterns or actions that are conducive to success, productivity, happiness, rewarding relationships etc. etc. But in that process, we are more or less being led to believe that the same set of standards and formulas can be applied to ALL our multifaceted lives. Result? Imperceptible cows in a herd.
If there is ONE thing you REALLY ought to be doing before you are 25, and even after, it’s this – learn to embrace your individuality. The quirks that set you apart from the norm can be non-ideal yet STILL prove to be your strength. If you couldn’t relate to the ‘10 SIGNS OF SUCCESSFUL PEOPLE’, DONT sweat it. Find and define success in your own way. Letting your creative juices flow along their own path will probably work better for you than trying to adopt someone else’s lifestyle. DO all the ’20 MISTAKES YOU DON’T WANT TO MAKE IN YOUR 20S’ and laugh out loud when you emerge with a few scars! Eventually they will become trophies under the ‘20 Lessons Learnt in Your 20s’ list.
Before you lose yourself in the sea of DOS and DONTS, remember to retain your individualism and just BE yourself. Learn, don’t imitate.