“If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.”
Gordon A. Eadie 1945
As we grow, and learn, we discover which things are most important to us. We try on different viewpoints and moral codes, particularly through our teenage years, emerging with some idea of who we want to be, and what kind of world we want to live in. We then continue to learn and grow.
To give examples of the things that might be important to us, while we are growing:
My 2yr old would argue that dessert should be served after every single meal.
My 9yr old, that bedtime shouldn’t exist, but if it did anything before midnight was too early.
My 12yr old, that they should be allowed to spend time with, and talk to their friends at all times, and that this has a much higher priority than homework or chores.
We grow and we learn. We develop a broader perspective of the world, and our place within it. Our priorities start to turn more outward, rather than focusing entirely on ourselves.
Without your own set of values, it is too easy to be swayed by any passing idea. If you know what you believe in, or stand for, you are able to listen to the new ideas, but, if they do not conform to your standards, you are able to let it go.
Don’t think I’m suggesting not to challenge your own beliefs. This is beneficial and helps us to grow. Think critically about these new ideas, research the differing opinions, but come to your own conclusions. You can only do this when you know what you believe in.
What do you stand for?
Sometimes we all need a little help, and sometimes we have a little extra to give. We might need someone to stand up for us, or we may stand up for someone else, who, in that moment, is unable to do so.
Thinking about this triggered a memory for me, which I would like to share with you.
This was a very long time ago, but it still makes me laugh when I think about it. When I was a child, my family and I were at the local swimming pool. I was charged with watching my baby sister in the toddler pool. I was sitting in the pool with her, we were splashing about, and generally enjoying ourselves. A boy a few years older than my sister approached, and started yelling at her, while kicking water at her. Angry, I stood up, with an expression on my face that showed my feelings towards him. I was quite tall for my age, so as I stood, he kept looking up and up. Then, with a frightened look on his face he ran away. After wiping my sister’s face, we both began laughing.