“Dude, you’re in your twenties! Don’t be so boring.”
“This is the time to go crazy and do anything you want!”
Let me paint you the scenario of when these phrases usually get thrown around: I’d be sitting on the couch in my pajamas with a cup of green tea feeling perfectly content and relaxed after a long, busy week, while my friends, dressed up and looking glam, urge me to go out with them. Now, I love to have fun as much as the next person, but the whole “work hard, play harder” is not the motto I choose to live my life by. To be honest, it’s just too exhausting! Having said that, this is obviously a personal preference and not everyone has to agree, which is kind of the point of this blog post. I personally like to have a healthy balance between work, fun, and some me time. I have no problem with people who like to tip the scale towards the party-all-night end, or those who chose to stay wrapped up in their duvet most weekends. What I do have an issue with however, is when people try to push their preferences on me and label me as boring for not conforming to their idea of fun.
I think we’ve become a generation that likes to follow the crowd. This could be why this homogeneous idea of ‘having fun’ has emerged. You’re simply not cool enough if you don’t do what everyone else does. I often joke around with my friends that I am an 80-year-old stuck in a 20-year-old’s body. I’m usually in bed way earlier than my roommates and my idea of a perfect night is a nice dinner with my close friends or a girl’s night. I’m much more of a morning person and that’s when I feel the most energetic and get the most out of my day. I prefer a walk around the park early in the morning than a night out. For me, most evenings are a time for a well-deserved rest, whether it’s by myself and a stack of DVDs or with friends whose company I truly enjoy. But for some reason, having those preferences seems almost taboo when you’re in your twenties. It seems to me that because you’re in your coveted twenties you need to act a certain way; you need to enjoy every second and party like there’s no tomorrow. Well for me those two concepts contradict each other sometimes. I’m all for enjoying every moment of my day – and I think that this concept should apply to everyone and not just to the 20 somethings out there – but that simply doesn’t happen when I’m out partying till the crack of dawn, which has somehow become synonymous with living your life.
I don’t think this concept of people pushing their values and preferences onto others is unique to our generation, nor does it happen only at school or university. Unfortunately this is something that we’ve been doing for quite a while, and you can see it everywhere from home to university to the workplace. I say it’s time for us to really understand and embrace the concept that each person is entitled to his/her own choices and unless this is having a negative affect on the person, it really is not up to us to judge people based on how they live their lives.