“When you adopt the standards and the values of someone else, you surrender your own integrity [and] become, to the extent of your surrender, less of a human being.” — Eleanor Roosevelt.
Eleanor doesn’t suggest we not listen to others, but correctly reminds us that our standards and values are our own. Whether it is family, friends, leaders, or teachers people are always telling us how to think or believe. People we know well and people we don’t know from Adam are trying to influence how we should think. Social media, newspapers, and television beat us over the head with how we should think and believe.
So I write in this election season to remind that you may listen and hear lots of views, but your standards, beliefs, and values belong to you, and you alone. Don’t hesitate to trust your own instincts and conscience.
Own who you are, and who you want to be. The voices you hear each minute are only voices, some more educated than others, but they are not yours.
In establishing your values and standards surrender is not an option.