Don't Live By Default, Live By Design

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“Living happily is a matter of choosing to fulfill the positive demands of your inner-self over your social expectations.” – Edmond Mbiaka

It is a sad revelation that all over the world today, a great number of people are living their lives by default. What do I mean?

I am sure you will agree with me that none of us is born with a manual which spells out our life’s purpose or how we should live our lives. No wonder living in the society as we have today has turned out to be living by default – that’s it, living by what the society expects of you-. In order words, living the way the society wants you to live. It has become a norm in most modern societies to expect a young person to go to school, get good grades, graduate, get a good job, get married and continue with other societal expectations. The truth is, this standard that is set by the society does not put into consideration the life purpose of the individual. The society fails to realize that each person is made differently with inherent passion and aspirations. So many people who follow the societal expectations often end up dissatisfied with their lives; they may have everything any man could ever dream of, but yet find no peace and satisfaction in all that they’ve got. They are consistently left with a gap within, seeking for something to fill it. Since following established expectations is the norm, every young person growing up in the society tend to unconsciously live by these expectations, without finding out if they were made for a purpose greater than merely living to meet up with already set standards.

The external pressure to live according to what the society expects tend to prevent people from finding what their life purpose is. When an individual is not aware of the purpose for which he was born, he tends to live life doing things that doesn’t correspond to his original design. People, who don’t have an idea of what their purpose is, tend to go with the flow and live their lives like the majority. In a country like Nigeria, the urge to explore the uncharted aspect of living is usually thwarted by most parents who will force you or ‘discipline’ you to choose an area you ordinarily did not have interest in, but because they believe such area will earn you more in the future, it is shoved through your throat. Talk about the overbearing and jealous employers, even fellow employees, who will pull you down if they see any sign of progress in the same area they once told you was laughable or not possible to make headway. Imagine this; if everyone in the world chooses to follow the common path established by the society, what do you think would happen to human civilization? The truth is our progress and growth would be stunted. If we all follow the same path, or live our lives the same way, it means we will keep doing things the way it has always been done, which will result in getting the same result over a considerable period of time.

Great transformation in the society has been made, not by people who lived their lives by default, but by people who have a strong awareness that they were born for a purpose. If you consider great individuals like Jesus Christ, Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King Jr, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Abraham Lincoln and a host of others, you will realize that these people didn’t live for their belly, nor hold firmly to how the society expected them to live their lives. They all knew within themselves that they were born for a purpose greater than merely going with the flow, but to shape humanity in a unique way. They went on to live their life purpose and created a meaningful life for themselves and the rest of the human the race.

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