The issues with accepting different opinions

As high school students, we tend to overweigh the judgements and opinions of others. Whether it be for a homework problem, friendship issues or even what to wear, we take comfort in hearing other’s opinions. Though we should consider others judgements,we should value our own much more.

Listening to others is not necessarily bad, since having reassurance and advice from peers can never be a detrimental thing to have. In fact, having a third person looking into situations can often time lead to calm and canny advice. It’s true, our emotions can sometimes hinder our ability to think clearly, leading to irrational and poor decision making.

The negative part of consulting with others is when we begin to lose trust in our own judgement. On a test, there is no double checking with our friends whether or not we’re correct. If we grow too dependent on listening to others, we lose the ability to problem solve and think freely.

Trusting others opinions may also lead to a weakened sense of confidence in social situations. For example, if a person is unsure about his or her look, but overhears a conversation about them being fat or ugly, that person will tend to believe that opinion. This is the power of other people’s words: it’s “valid” confirmation even though it is still an opinion.

It’s difficult to say why people instinctively trust others above their own. It could be that we have seen our own actions falter, therefore we are inclined to believe our thought processes may be flawed. Contrastingly, it seems that everyone else around us have their lives together, therefore, they are more sensible and aware.

We don’t have to go through life deciding everything for ourselves, but we shouldn’t discount our own state of mind either. In the end, other people’s judgements may not be more valid than our own, and though it may seem like it, our peers are not smarter or more qualified to make decisions. Trusting ourselves can ultimately make us more content and better prepared for the future.

By Brian Chen, Opinion editor

Editorial cartoon by Amy Lo

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