I like to consider myself a realist. At times I might need to have that extra optimistic outlook to overcome some obstacles, but for the most part I am a realist. I prefer to look at the most probable option when it comes to life’s choices and make my decisions based on that. However, I try to make sure that I am still on the positive side of thought. I feel one of the biggest threats to happiness is the pessimist disguised as the realist. I think we all have that one person in our life that always seems to argue or disagree with our choices. That person could be a friend, a family member, or a coworker. This person usually has some perception of your reality and feel that they know better than you. This person tends to have a personal opinion or idea that they present as a better option without first asking further about your situation. They believe that they have lived a longer life, and they know how life goes better than a younger person. They claim their thoughts and ideas are not meant to be negative but realistic. I’m sure most mean well, but they are truly unaware of the damage they are causing. At 23 years old, I have run into people like this often. I grew up a lot faster than the average teenager with significantly more responsibility. I started dating Kyle at 16 and we got engaged at 21. We moved in when we were 21 & 22 before we got married almost a year later. During all of these stages of life, we always had people telling us not to do these things because they “knew better.” These people were staging as realists, but it was very clear they were pessimists. Consciously ignoring these people has been something I have struggled with for a while. Their comments always hung in the back of my mind through other decisions I needed to make. They weighed on my confidence in tough situations as if I didn’t trust myself to do the best thing. It is something I am working on even now. Kyle and I are now looking for a home to purchase to settle down in for a while while I am in school in Atlanta. We really have no desire to continue renting when we know we will be in this area for a significant amount of time. And of course, with life changes there always comes critics. Except this time, I am reminding myself of the above. Their opinion is not my reality. They don’t fully know our plans, goals, or even our fullest capabilities, and instead of letting their perceptions of my reality become my reality, I will choose to be a true realist and drive towards what I know is best. As a “millennial,” I refuse to fall into the constraining mold set forth for my generation. They call it young and naive, I call it blooming and goal-oriented. I will get what I want, and negativity has no place in my mind.
Happy Holidays everyone!