We were all born to be unique, but at some point along the way, many decide that it is better to be normal. Being normal is not bad, it means following the rules, complying with what is established and following the rhythm that most people make. Being normal guarantees a certain structure and security in life because the way of going has been marked by others.
In this regard, Erich Fromm wrote: “If I am like everyone else, if I do not have feelings or thoughts that make me different, if I adapt in the customs, the clothes, the ideas, to the patron of the group, I am saved; saved from the fearsome experience of loneliness. Dictatorial systems use threats and terror to induce this conformity; the democratic countries, suggestion and propaganda”. In fact, Rollo May said: “In our society the opposite of courage is not cowardice but conformity”.
Of course, there are also other people who decide to deviate from the norm and follow their dreams, think for themselves and live at their own pace. For these people the world is not easy because the main objective of society is conformity and homogeneity. The society is afraid of the difference. Therefore, authentic people often have to face many obstacles throughout their lives.
10 images that reflect the loneliness and dilemmas of authentic people
This Japanese artist has captured some of the sensations that authentic people usually experience and that is sometimes difficult to express in words.
- “Freedom means nothing, unless it implies the freedom to be different” said Marty Rubin, although sometimes that also means that you will feel like a weirdo, an anachronism in the midst of all.
- Society strives to create molds, and everyone who does not adapt is left out.
- José Ingenieros said that “routine is the habit of giving up thinking”. That’s why it’s so devastating for creative and authentic people.
- Fitting in the narrow patterns of society does not usually lead to happiness. In fact, Rita Mae Brown said that “the reward for conformity is that everyone likes you except yourself”. In the long run, it will end up draining you emotionally.
- Being authentic can be a lonely path, where sometimes you can feel misunderstood and without escape.
- The rhythm imposed by society puts pressure on people who have different tempos, sometimes making them feel inadequate or incapable because they are not able to achieve the results that are expected of them in the regulated time.
- “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment”, said Ralph Waldo Emerson. However, sometimes the road goes uphill and you think it’s much better to abandon it, to be normal, silencing what makes you special.
- Feeling that the others manipulate your life through subtle threads that trap you in a social spider’s web.
- When you play a role for which you are not done and in which you do not fit, ends up stealing your energy and strength.
- Noting that “Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation”, as Oscar Wilde said, and not understanding how the others do not realize it.
In any case, do not let the limited perceptions of the others define you. When you feel that the price to pay for being authentic is very high, think about the words of Albert Einstein: “The person who follows the crowd will not normally go beyond the crowd. The person who walks alone will probably reach places where no one has been before”.