When people want you to be more or to do more, that’s their problem.
Take Alfie Deyes for example since people seem to enjoy making him a target. People place their expectations on him, and then they’re disappointed when he doesn’t rise to meet them. But, he too has a path, and he also has the right to live his life as he chooses. I can easily show you 21-year olds who couldn’t and wouldn’t be able to responsibly handle what he has going for him right now. Just like I could easily find 21-year olds who are doing great, lasting, and impactful work in the world, and who don’t post it.
The World Needs All Types!
Writers find their voice. Artists find their style. Not everyone’s calling, work, or purpose is the same, and not everyone comes into their own at the same time or age.
Sometimes people want you to come out the gate on level 100. Meanwhile, you’re functioning and gracefully excelling at level 47, steadily climbing to 100, and you have every right to. It’s silly to think that everyone can and should mature at the same age, that they will all at the same time see the world through the same lens, or that all at once they will rise up to revolutionize that world. Allow people the space to grow, mature, and learn at whatever pace their life allows.
It’s one thing to want someone to explore what they’re capable of doing and becoming, and wanting them to dream bigger or to live up to their potential. It’s another thing to beat them down and try to shame or guilt them into being what you define as “more”. If they did it out of shame, guilt, or peer pressure, it wouldn’t be authentic and lasting anyway. The thing is, even when a person reaches whatever level you’ve made up for them, like even if Alfie creates the moving body of work you think he should, there will still be opposition. That opposition will come mainly from those whose fears will be reflected back to them through his success.
Stop sucking the life out of people; it doesn’t make you look tough, it exposes your thoughts about yourself. And stop living through other people. Quit wanting them to ‘get out there’ or ‘put out higher quality content’ when really you’re saying you want someone to do the very thing you’re afraid to. Everyone finds their thing, their work, their passion in their time.
There are followers who…
love everything you do and say, no matter what. They get alerts when you post anything on any platform and ‘like’ everything you post. They think anyone who doesn’t is a hater.
think you should ‘up your game’ and put out higher quality content. They keep up with you even though they say they don’t like you. They can’t stand to watch you and they can’t stand not to, so they can whine about you not being ‘deep enough’ or ‘creating content that matters’.
take and accept you for exactly who you present yourself to be. They know what type of things you post and if they’re in the mood for it, or they genuinely like it, they watch it, ‘like’ it, and/or let you know. When you don’t post, they carry on with their lives and if they don’t like what you post they just go watch something else. But, they want the best for you, so they will let you know when you’ve screwed up. They recognize that you’re an imperfect young adult trying to figure out his or her way in the world, just like them.
People place expectations because they want you to match their ideal you. But that’s their problem. You’ve got enough stuff to handle, don’t carry their bag of expectations around too. Live your life authentically and with integrity. What you do now and who you are now will not be what you do and who you are forever. Enjoy where you are, challenge yourself as to what you can do, and live a life that makes you proud.
*Alfie Deyes was merely the example person I used to reinforce a point. I do not know him personally, and this isn’t a post against or in support of him. Although, just like all of you, I am rooting for him.