Our society is one full of standards. If we still live with our parents at a certain age, we’re deemed pathetic. If men are virgins in their adult years, they’re considered less than manly. If women choose not to have children, something must be wrong with them. If someone doesn’t have a job, laziness must be the reason.
While some standards keep us motivated and set a good example of how, as humans, we should act (for example, a standard of a good person being an individual who doesn’t harm another is an ideal standard to set), many standards are quite dangerous to one’s mental health.
The problem with standards is that there’s a lot more to what goes on with a situation than many understand. For example, I still live with one of my parents and do not currently have a job. I realize that by admitting this, I’m subjecting myself to judgement. However, I believe sharing my story with others is essential.
The reason I haven’t met quite a few of society’s standards is because I struggle with anxiety. I hate it and I wish I didn’t have to deal with it, but there it is. I’ve made a lot of progress over the last few years, but I’m still not ready to work. My anxiety still holds me back from accomplishing a lot of my goals.
Sadly, due to the world in which we live, I feel the need to explain why I haven’t reached society’s standards. So many people feel the same way—they feel they have to explain themselves so they receive less judgement from those around them.
I want to share something with all of you who are reading this. Just because you may not meet society’s standards doesn’t make you pathetic or any lesser of a human being. We all struggle and we all reach our goals at different times in our lives. Are you a kind person? Are you trying your hardest to get over your obstacles? Do you try your best to help others and contribute in some way to the world? These are the things that matter. I’m not saying you can’t strive to get a job if you’re not working, or that you shouldn’t work hard to be independent. What I’m saying is to avoid stressing yourself out because you’re not meeting the time limit set by others.
I’m going to be honest. I often feel saddened when I think about how so many people are ahead of me in their life journey. It can be hard not to focus on all of the things that I wish I was doing, but am not. The truth remains, however, that I’m working extremely hard to get through my anxiety, to overcome my fears and to make progress. I try to use my gift of writing to help others. I write fiction, and I try to do all I can to get closer to accomplishing all of my goals.
While I understand it can be a difficult thing to do, it’s important that instead of comparing ourselves to others and focusing on what we feel we lack, that we focus on our positive attributes, accomplishments and talents. We have all of these things—all we have to do is recognize them and use them in the best way possible.
Like this post? View similar content here: A Belated Post for #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek