Don’t let fear define your life choices


There are so many opportunities in the world, it is mind-boggling. 

Unfortunately, few people explore these to the full extent. Obviously there can be some restrictions, such as the situation into which you are born and your education. There is also the possibility that one does not want to pursue certain opportunities. 

However, I am specifically talking about those that want to pursue something, but they limit themselves. To me, that is such a shame. I was always raised to try and keep as many possibilities open and to follow my dreams even if they are difficult. I understand that not everyone was raised this way and that some people are even persuaded to do things because others want them to, but one thing I have to say is it is your life. Own it. 

By now, “YOLO” is a pretty well-known saying, the child of the more classic “carpe diem.” Though these sayings are commonplace, people often do not follow through with them. Unfortunately, people, particularly college kids, use this as an excuse to binge drink and do other shortsighted, meaningless activities. That is not the point at all. If that fulfills your life, then great, but I think it needs to be applied on a larger scale. Basically, dream big.

The point is to not let fear define your life and limit the choices you make. I think that society is becoming more and more used to instant gratification, which has created a society of people who easily abandon their objective as a repercussion. I wish I knew a way to make people more relentless in their pursuit of happiness, but that is all up to the individual. The individual defines his or her happiness, and the individual is the only one who can obtain that happiness. People seem to think that happiness will just fall into their lap, but I have come to believe that it is something that you have to work for. It has to be a constant effort to choose happiness. Limiting oneself based on fear or people’s expectations consequently hinders that pursuit.

Life, from a cynical standpoint, is a tragedy. Its trajectory is on a path toward destruction. However, it is all about perspective. As an individual, you can choose to let the rough things in life weigh you down or you can choose to move forward and focus on the positive. There is no way to go through life without experiencing some sort of sadness, but at the same time, is it not this sadness that lets you really appreciate the good things in life? Without the knowledge of how dismal things can be, there is nothing to compare with the joyous times. 

Keeping that in mind, times of hardship are tough. Hardships will never be easy to endure, but you can’t let them define your life, no matter how frequent the bad things seem to be. Life really is too short to sweat the small things, to let other people tell you what to do or to let fear define you.