More often than not, we catch ourselves in situations where we agree to participate in something or do something that we don’t want to do in the name of common courtesy. It has become a mandatory part of our society that we "go along" with others. It tends to hide behind the façade of manners.
Is it really so fair to force or be forced to participate when the activity is something you wouldn’t have wanted to be a part of in the first place? Consider this situation that we’re all familiar with -- the one where we were taught to judge our decisions by as children that carried over into adulthood in the form of a sarcastic statement: If a group of people were jumping off of a cliff and asked you to join, would you have the choice to decide yes or no, or is there a formula for politeness that you’d have to follow before you considered what you actually wanted? Of course you’d have a choice, that’s what we’re all taught, anyway, when our parents were teaching us to make our own independent decisions and telling us not to follow along with the crowd.
Too often, though, we get trapped into obligatory activities that we’d rather sit out from; but independence is thrown out the window in the face of manners, politeness, or common courtesy. Were you to voice your decision to decline the invitation to the undesirable activity, it would earn you sideways glances and noses a little higher in the air, not respect for making your own decisions.
So, let’s think this through. Why are we taught to be free-thinkers, yet told to put up with a little bit of discomfort for the sake of being agreeable to others? Why is it viewed as rude to freely disagree, have a difference of opinion, or refuse to take part in an activity?
Of course, being a writer and all, the first thing that comes to my mind when considering these questions isn't an answer, but to ask, “Why NOT?”
Why not let go of our attachment to the opinions of others? Why NOT do what we want, what we believe to be right, with the short life that we have? Why NOT say to hell with manners and being people pleasers? Why NOT be free, and not just free to speak our minds, but free from the thoughts and opinions of others that chain us to our obligatory common courtesy? WHY. NOT.
It’s just a thought. But I figured, why NOT share it? Why NOT spark the imagination of others? Why NOT encourage others to think outside the box and be free from the bonds that society has put on our minds and mouths?