When you want to be happy being you, resistance is not futile

Photo credit: Kalen Emsley (StockSnap)

We’ve had some really cold weeks here in Austria. Morning temperatures were around -20 °C (-4 °F) for days on end. Two weeks into the cold spell I noticed it was only -8 °C (25 °F). I caught myself thinking that a temperature that was actually quite comfortable. Where I previously would have thought -8 °C to be rather cold, I had apparently adapted and found myself a new normal. Which left me wondering about all the other times we adapt and find ourselves a new or different normal.

One of the greatest talents we humans have is adapting to circumstances we find ourselves in.

We are so good at it in fact that we hardly notice ourselves adapting. We just do.

Which is why – when you take a good look at everything you do in your life – you may find areas in it where you have adapted.

I once heard someone tell the story of a talented young man, who wanted to go to art school to study painting.

He had proudly put a poster of the art school he wanted to attend on the fridge in the kitchen. In doing so he boldly announced his intention to his family. It also served as a reminder of the vision he held for himself.

One day a family friend was visiting. He saw the poster and asked the young man’s father why he was allowing his son to go to art school. That was after all just a “sissy school to study something as useless as art”. Instead of sticking up for his son, the father gave some lacklustre answer. He pretty much implied he had similar feelings.

Related Post: 4 Things to do A Lot When Learning to Live Your Own Life

The son overheard his father’s answer. Disappointed in his father but also afraid to not live up to his expectations, the son took down the art school poster.

Instead of following his dream and passion, he adapted to a different normal. Rather than going to art school he opted to go to business school instead. Though he went on to have a successful career he was also very unhappy in it.

What struck me as the saddest thing of all? He never put another brush to a canvas again!

We all know of people with similar stories. Stories that are not always about career choices either!

Sometimes we adapt to a value system different from our own, because it is easier than being different.

Sometimes it is just easier to go along than to resist the pressure that is (often implicitly) exerted by family, friends, colleagues or society.

Adapting to circumstances, value systems, expectations, etc. is not always a bad thing, unless … it makes you really unhappy.

When that happens…

It is time to be different from those around you!

It is time to do the things you want to do your way!

It is time to realise resistance is not futile!

(Yep I’m a »Star Trek – The Next Generation« fan. If you are too, you’ll know what this means!)

Resisting starts with knowing what it is that you really want from life.

It starts with knowing what is really important to you.

When you are clear on that it becomes a lot easier to stick to your own convictions, your own plans!

When you know what you truly value in life, being different from those around you will be okay!

All because you consciously choose not to adapt!

As always…

Go dare greatly