Most of us desire to be accepted at some level in our lives. Although many people attempt to find acceptance in their own lifestyle, there is always a certain level of compromise or transition made by an individual to gain acceptance. Each person is influenced by society differently and makes adaptations, consciously or unconsciously, to their change their lifestyle in order to gain acceptance.
The concept of acceptance can lead to loss of identity. Our society today is so focused on being noticed, being accepted. We post pictures of ourselves online and aim to stand out to other people, we want people to see us and notice us.
What drives this concept of acceptance?
Where has our society gone wrong?
Why are we so focused on the opinions of others?
Seeking acceptance can destroy a person, they can begin to be pulled away from pursuing their passions because of what they feel others may think. Its so common in our world that we see thousands of people following the crowd. Same lifestyle, same motives, same selfies, same hobbies, same people. Sadly, we have become a cookie-cutter society that is afraid of uniqueness.
Rather than focusing on being accepted and blindly following the crowd, we should challenge one another to be unique, to be original. By removing the mindset of expecting to be accepted, we can work to create our own identities and network with others who share commonalities in their identity. Be unique, be original, and expect to be accepted.
Think of the last time you failed. Think of the last time you attempted something, devoted your time and effort to it, and simply failed. Its not a pleasant memory to dwell on, but these failures have shaped you into the person you are today. We all hate failure, we cringe at the concept of it. Many of us view failure as a negative part of life: failing a test or failing to meet expectations. Whatever the case may be, we all experience failure at some level in our lives. Rather than having a negative mindset of failure, I challenge you to view it differently.
Without failure, there is no growth. From an early age we are all taught that in order to succeed we must not fail; we are taught to do our best and we are taught that failure is frowned upon. At some point in our lives, this negative mindset of failure needs to shift. Although we should never encourage it, failure can be a powerful tool for growth in our lives. We should embrace it and understand it rather than hiding it and viewing it negatively. When a person fails, they must work through their failures, change their approach, and grow. When we hit roadblocks or experience failure in our lives, we should not grow weary or become discouraged. There is no better time for growth than in a season of failure in our lives. If we can shift our perspective, we can begin to understand our failures rather than allowing them to pull us down.
By stepping back and understanding our failures, we can begin to form new methods of approach to reach success. By approaching our situation from different angles, we can overcome failure and grow. Never view your current situation negatively, and always remember that there is much to be gained by properly interpreting and responding to failure.
13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.