Almost everything that stresses us out can be traced back to two powerful needs: the need to belong and the need to be authentic. Behind all the obsession with fame, money, power, social media etc, there is this fierce battle between the desire to fit in and the desire to listen to our hearts. Nobody is completely inauthentic and at some level, we all want to be accepted.
The problem with being authentic is that more often than not, you will be treated as an outcast. But if you choose to pretend, you will miss out on those people who are as ‘weird’ as you. How will someone know that you have a unique thought unless you have the courage to be vulnerable and share your ‘weird’ thoughts with the world? Most of us are stressed out because we are neither here or there. We neither accept ourselves for being a sheep nor do we forget the crowd and march to our own tune. We say that majority cannot be wrong and yet we want elite stuff. We say that experts are superior than the ordinary people and yet we need validation from others to confirm that he/she is really an expert. For example, we say that we respect the Academy Awards because the winners are not chosen by people who have zero knowledge of the technicalities of cinema. And yet, we respect the Oscars because it is popular. These contradictions and confusions make our lives stressful. They also bring tension to our relationships. Perhaps it is better to look at others as people struggling with these two powerful desires. These desires makes them act in good, bad or ugly ways.