I've had the chance to talk with a couple of guys this week and this common theme continues to come up. It seems like it is so hard for young men to make the right decisions. Peer pressure is just one part of this huge puzzle when it comes down to making the right choices. What's really funny is when I hear kids at school chanting "Do it and you're cool! Do it and you're cool!". I'm pretty sure they're kidding but if you're the average teen, racking up cool points is a pretty big deal.
If you're anything like me, being the only person trying to do what's right makes you stick out like a sore thumb. As a teen, I was teased and made fun of for trying to do the right thing (even by some of my family members). I was called "Mr. Goody Two-Shoes". That was crushing! Now I'm no saint and I've made some pretty terrible decisions but I believe that doing the right thing takes more courage, guts, and a made up mind than doing what everyone else is doing. It takes one tough person to resist the crowd and fight against the current. On the other hand, it takes a wimp to follow the crowd, especially when the crowd is headed down the wrong path. Somewhere along the way, this has become twisted.
To do what's right also takes support so, make sure you are doing all you can to put yourself in good company (see Tip #2 Life is a Team Sport). Get a group of friends around you that has the same goals and is headed in the right direction. There is strength in numbers!
So what if you're not popular or you're called weird. So what if people think you're whack and not cool because you have morals and values. Who are you trying to impress? When you think about it, doing what's right doesn't "cost" you anything. It's doing what's wrong that could "cost" you everything.
Written 5/1/2013 by John Weaver