I wrote about things my teen self deserved to know back on the other blog, but there is a certain point I'd like to elaborate on here, because... I just think it's especially relevant.
There are times in our lives when we feel like we need to live up to other people's expectations of us.
Sometimes it can be a good thing. Like, if you have a particularly inspiring mentor, or a friend who genuinely thinks you're talented and supports you. People who are good and nurturing, who believe in you and encourage your efforts regardless of the outcome, people who stimulate your mind and make you want to do better, those are the people whose expectations you want to live up to.
And it's great.
But sometimes people expect things of you which are not within your power, or which are not solely within your power, and then you feel overwhelmed and helpless. Those are the people, or at least the situations, which you need to learn how to navigate.
It's hard. Sometimes it feels impossible.
I grew up feeling like I have to be a role model. It wasn't terrible, but it wasn't great either, and it got worse as I got older and, inevitably, started doing mistakes or having doubts. It's a part of growing up - the older you get, the more uncertainty you face, until there's only a handful of concrete rules left. And it can be hard, knowing that the consequences aren't only for you, but may spread all over to people you know and love.
It's true, to an extent. It's also incredibly patronizing towards the people around you.
Because guess what? Even if you make a mistake, it's still up to them whether they want to follow your example or not. Or even to continue to follow your example. People grow. They change. They find what works for them and what does not. Just as you do.
To paraphrase Elsa, let it (the fuck) go and stop trying to live up to other people's expectations if they don't suit you.
Happy Easter, everyone.