Inspired by my recent visit to the National Portrait Gallery exhibition ‘Audrey Hepburn: Portraits Of An Icon‘ I came across the above quote by the leading lady herself.
I too believe in all those things as well as doing what scares you, going against the norm, the importance of exploring both yourself and this planet we live on……..and I definitely believe in fairies! But most importantly I believe in myself and think it is important to stand up for your beliefs.
Standing up for what you believe in can be a scary thing. Doing so may loose you a few friends, effect your livelihood and take you out of your comfort zone. But if you whole heartedly believe what you are standing up for is worth the risk then do so without hesitation. And never apologies for your beliefs, passions or interests. They are after all what makes you who you are. Therefore respect your values and ultimately the people who matter the most will respect you and no doubt support you in return.
So what if your beliefs are in the minority? Let me tell you the popular choice is not always the right choice.
When you stand up for what you truly believe in, it’s likely sooner or later you will come to a cross roads. I encourage you to put one foot in front of the other in the direction that feels right to you, even if you can’t see where the road ahead will take you, and just keep walking.
And if you are unsure what you believe in… listen to your intuition. That voice deep down within you, that speaks with unwavering conviction, determination, and love, always knows best.
The benefits of standing up for what you believe in can have a tremendous positive impact on you and your life:
1. Builds self confidence. When others dictate what we should think, feel and do, it eats away at our self-confidence. We begin to distrust our own instincts and lose the ability to decipher what we really believe versus what everyone wants us to believe. Although it may be difficult at first, the more we stand-up for ourselves, the more we build our self-confidence. It takes guts to express an unpopular viewpoint and it takes guts to say no when it is so much easier to say yes. It also takes guts to risk losing a job, friends or opportunities because someone won’t like our opinion. However, the more you tap into your “guts,” the easier it gets, and the more confident you’ll become.
2. Helps develop a strong sense of self. If we bow to others and their opinions and do things their way, whether right or wrong, we start to lose our own identity and start to forget for what we truly stand for. Furthermore, the less you allow yourself to think freely and develop your own belief system, the more you become a follower without your own direction. On the other hand, the more authentic you are to your needs and viewpoints, the more you will understand your sense of self.
3. Encourages self-respect. Would you respect someone who went against their own values because it was convenient or because it was more popular? Probably not. And, with good reason. Being indecisive is far from admirable, or for that matter, respectable. Yet if you encounter someone with a less popular opinion who stands their ground (assuming the opinion or belief is founded in ethical principles), you would most likely have great respect for them. Same goes for the way you perceive yourself. The more you stand up for your beliefs, the more self-respect you will develop. If you continually give in to what others want and compromise your own values in the process, you are going to lose respect for yourself.
4. Establishes independence. There are two things to consider here. First, if you don’t stand up for yourself or your beliefs, then how can you expect others to? And second, the person who you should always be able to count on to stand up for you – no matter what – is you. What this means is that the more you stand-up for your beliefs, the less you will rely on others to validate them. You’ll reinforce your independence and ability to stand on your own two feet without anyone else to support you unless needed.
Therefore, if you really believe in something, and you really think it is the right thing to do, then stand up for what you believe in. What do you believe in ?