8 Things That Don't Define You

8 Things That Don't Define You

It's important to remember what's important.
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It's very easy to get stressed out. And I mean just stressed out in general. Sometimes it feels as if the weight of the world rests on our shoulders, that we have to be perfect in everything we do, or else it isn't worth doing. We put so much pressure on ourselves to accomplish tasks, to complete goals or to overall succeed, but to what length? A little pressure is healthy, but a lot of pressure will ruin us. Stress takes years off of our lives, and, honestly, makes us look older than we are. So just remember things aren't as big of a deal as you think, and we are better defined by who we are inside and how we treat ourselves and others.

1. Our GPA.

Yes, it is very important to keep up a good GPA. It's important to go to class, to take notes, to pay attention, to study, and to learn. But sometimes we can do all the right things and not receive the best grade, and we can't beat ourselves up over it. A good GPA isn't the only thing necessary to get a job after high school or college.

2. Our weight.

I love exercising, but sometimes it's easy to get caught up in fitness and looking a certain way. It gets to the point where the satisfaction of working out and eating healthy turns into an unhealthy obsession of chasing something uncatchable. We should be content in our healthy bodies whether they look like a Victoria Secret model's or not, but our weight isn't an important part of who we are.

3. The money in our bank account.

Yes, money is stressful, especially if you pay for your own rent, sorority/fraternity dues, groceries and things like that. But it's important to remember our lives cannot be run by money and the constant drive to make more. It's important to take time to step away from the finances and realize really amazing things are completely free.

4. How we look in general.

It's so easy to compare ourselves to others and to find reasons why we aren't attractive enough. Personally, I hate that I'm not tan enough, I don't have a jawline and I have a very short torso. The thing is, there will always be someone more attractive so it's pointless getting caught up on things we can't change. "Good looks" aren't important because they rarely ever last.

5. How many "likes" we get.

We've all heard this before, but I don't think we actually listen. I always tell myself I won't care how many likes I get on an Instagram or a tweet, but I'm a total liar. I completely care; it's really hard not to. But the truth is, social media should be somewhere we can share our honest thoughts, pictures and art. It should be fun, not stressful.

6. What major we are.

OK, this one technically defines us in the way that it tells people what we're interested in and how we want to make money for the next forty-to-fifty years, but people can't make accurate judgment calls based off of our majors. I get embarrassed telling people I'm a Communications major, because I know they're thinking I'm not smart or driven enough for a "real" major, but then I remind myself I'm plenty smart and driven, and judging someone because what they decide makes them happy is childish.

7. How often (or not often) we travel.

Traveling is really cool, but not everyone has the money or the means to travel all over the world. Traveling a lot means you're lucky, not that you're more sophisticated than someone else. And not traveling doesn't mean you're boring or one-dimensional, you just find thrills in local endeavors. Both options are totally acceptable ways to live!

8. Your sleeping habits.

I am so sick of being told I'm not going to be successful because I hate waking up early. One time Benjamin Franklin says waking up early is good, and we're all supposed to just follow his word for the rest of forever? Early-risers and late-risers have an equal shot in this world and I refuse listen to a anything against that ideal.
Cover Image Credit: Jolie Delia

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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Stand In The Mirror

An exercise in self-love.

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If you're reading this, then I want you to stop what you're doing right now, get up from wherever you're sitting, and go stand in the mirror.

Yes, that's right. Close your laptops, put down your phones, and walk to the closest bathroom, or vanity, or wherever else you can see your reflection the most clearly. Pretend like you're the only person in the world for a little while.

Are you there? Good.

Now I want you to look at yourself, very closely.

Start with your eyes. How beautiful they look underneath the light; you can see all their colors, just like a painting! Something that unique belongs in an art museum, don't you think?

Those eyes of yours have seen so many wonderful things. Think of all the sunsets they've allowed you to witness, all the times your best friends have grinned from ear-to-ear and all the books you've read.

Now, look at your lips. Think of all the lovely people they may have kissed, all the Thanksgiving dinners they've touched and all the funny faces they've helped you express.

Think all of the times they've opened to exude laughter and joy, to express awe and other associated feelings words cannot express.

Now it's time to examine your arms. Shrug your shoulders and admire the way they fall so gently at your sides, like water flowing from the mouth of a river. Think of all the wonderful things they've helped you to reach, of all the trees they've helped you climb and monkey bars they've helped you swing through. Think of all the people they've hugged, and all the dogs they've helped you pet.

Finally, move to your legs. Think of all the races they've helped you win, all the hurdles they've helped you jump through and all the lengths they've helped you swim.

Think of all the pristine places they've carried you to, and reflect upon all the places you'll soon be heading to.

Can't you see now that you're a masterpiece, dripping with color and beauty, emotion and experience, from every fiber of your being?

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