Right now, at this exact moment, somewhere a child is born. His or her parents are so happy and they are dreaming about a life together. In about two to three years, they will start to teach the child about the social norms to fit in. Now, how can you teach a three year old child to do that? The mother gives some colors (non – hazardous) to the child to draw or color a picture. That innocent girl (I’m taking a girl as an example for the convenience and also because I have a daughter) picks the favorite one and starts to colour the tree, sky, house and grass in pink. She is so happy that she runs to show the beautiful picture to her mother. Now, the mother looks at the picture and asks her daughter, “why everything is pink? Look outside.. leaves and grasses are green, sky is blue and you should have given something else for the house”. The girl is upset now, but she goes back and colors exactly like her mom said, to make her happy because she loves her mother a lot. Her first lesson to fit in!
As a human being, we live in a society and it’s really important that we don’t do anything antisocial. To some extent, it is crucial that we accept the rules and regulations, culture and traditions, so that we don’t cause any harm to others. For instance, following the traffic rules to avoid accidents, wearing a mask to prevent the spread of coronavirus or learning music, dance or any art form to create a sense of belonging and to maintain our legacy. In these cases, to fit in is a must.
However, I believe that inorder to fit in we should not forget who we are or what our values and principles are. The rules and regulations of the government could be wrong and the traditions made by our ancestors could be cruel and unkind. As an individual, it is our right and obligation to stand out in those circumstances. I would like to give an example about a tradition we had which I clearly detest. ‘Sati’, a custom which was practiced in India, where a widow would throw herself to her husband’s pyre to burn to death as a proof that she was a good and dutiful wife. It is banned in India now, because of the effort of a person, Raja Ram Mohan Roy, who fought against his own custom and tradition back in 19th century. He stood out of the society’s norm so that women in his society can literally live. There are so many people who fought their whole lives to make things right which was generally accepted in the society. Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi and Galileo Galilei are just a few to name who fought for the values and principles which were against the society’s beliefs and practices.
Another reason to stand out is that, if something makes an individual happy then he or she should follow the heart. A family has three children whose parents are doctors. Their eldest son is an engineer and the daughter has enrolled herself to study MBBS to become a doctor. But, the youngest one is more interested in arts. He likes to paint and draw portraits. Now this boy is in dilemma because no one supports him and everyone is expecting him to be a doctor or an engineer but he wants to be an artist. What should he choose, family’s decision because they think that it will make his future secured and would make him more respectable in the society or his happiness and talent to create and give something new, fresh and beautiful to the society? In my opinion, it should be the latter one because no one knows what will happen in future and also, the same person can become a famous and honoured artist with the potential and hardwork. Moreover, no employer needs a grumpy and bad employee who hates his or her job.
As usual, I would like to add some famous quotes to support my belief on the topic. I hope that you would like them too.
The world accommodates you for fitting in, but only rewards you for standing out.Matshona Dhliwayo
Why fit in when you were to born to stand out?Dr. Seuss
If you are always trying to be normal you will never know how amazing you can be.Maya Angelou
Like shining stars, every one of us has the potential to light up the darkness with our own particular brilliance.”Unknown
Please leave your comments on the topic as I would really love to read them.