On Adhering to Social Expectations & More

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All too often I see examples of people who feel they need to do something, or do something a certain way, because that’s “the way people do it” or rather “that’s the expected way to do it. What if there’s a more efficient way of dealing with something but it’s not considered socially acceptable or out of the norm? I say do that.

An Example for Clarity

Say you started talking to someone online, it was great for a while but eventually you began to feel that you no longer gain anything from doing so, you naturally come to the conclusion that you want said conversations to end.

Now take a second and think about what would you do? I can imagine some of your ideas at first might sound like this:

  • “I’ll say I have something to do so I speak to them less and less often.”
  • “I’ll give them more of a cold shoulder, they’ll get bored of my boring answers eventually.”
  • “I won’t go on said messenger service.”

These sound very familiar, and they all have one thing in common. They’re generally considered the more “polite” thing to do. I don’t know about you but I see this as even worse than either telling them you have no further interest in talking to them or stopping talking them at all. You’re trying to sugarcoat something that’s already going to be considered socially bad by the other party. If I stop talking to you, you’re automatically going to come to the conclusion that I don’t like you for whatever reason eventually, shouldn’t I just be honest and make it clear that I’m not interested in pursuing further conversation? I probably don’t dislike you, I just don’t gain anything from our conversations.

How I Think It Should Be

I personally believe a world where everyone was bluntly honest would be a better one, misunderstandings would decrease substantially. You might think a world like that might seem rude and cold, but if that was the norm then it wouldn’t have these negative connotations attached to it. So whose idea was it to make these social conventions anyway? They just cover up the truth, and anything that does that should not be empowered.

Critical discussion would almost certainly benefit from a world attitude like this. It’s too often the case that people get emotional during a debate which completely botches the enjoyment of the debate itself. I want to rip your argument apart and vice-versa because  it’s not personal so it’s ok as long as we make sense and have evidence to back us up, that’s what is so good about a debate, we don’t have to sugarcoat anything and it’s totally fine. However when someone gets all emotional in a debate, they start to think the argument is against them when it’s actually against the issue at hand, and this my friends, is when debates devolve into arguments which lead nowhere great.

A great debate is when both sides know there’s no place for emotion or attachment, rather rational thought and logic. Now, imagine all of life was like this? I can say you’re an idiot and instead of being offended, you’ll take that in and think either “Am I an idiot? Let me analyse that and see from my experience… I’ve concluded I am in fact, an idiot, and here’s why” or “Am I an idiot? Let me analyse that and see from my experience… I’ve concluded I am in fact, not an idiot and here’s why”. This would be the Utopia I’d love to live in.

Of course there would be many issues within a world like this, like possibly not being able to feel any emotions, yes that means happiness, it certainly wouldn’t be perfect despite my use of the word “Utopia”. But I won’t get into something like that in this article, maybe later.

The Main Points (TL;DR)

  • I think it’s foolish to choose to do something out of the social expectations of others, choose it because it serves your purpose.
  • I think it’s foolish to choose to do something out of pure and raw emotion, do it because it’s rational.
  • Don’t be that guy who makes debate or discussion about you, remain detached.
  • Don’t be cooped up from growing as a person because other people don’t approve of you not conforming to their norms, within boundaries of course.
  • Just because “that’s the way people do it” doesn’t mean it’s the best way to do it.


– Jamie

Featured Image: ©Stefg74