There are hundreds of choices in our lives, starting from what should be for dinner and what university one should apply to. Big or small, these choices make up the directions in our lives. Therefore, decisions are important to us. The person who is concerned with the decision must make the decision him/herself. No one else should make it for that person. If that person renounces his/her responsibility of doing so, he/she is but a puppet. As John Stuart Mill, a famous philosopher, once said, “He who lets the world, or his own portion of it, choose his plan of life for him, has no need of any other faculty than the ape-like one of imitation.”
I’ve never thought about the importance of decisions until later in my life. I was never a good decision-maker; I always let others choose for me. I remember that in 5th grade, my friend’s mom asked me what I would like to order for dinner. I told her that I didn’t care; she could choose for me. She said I should choose, and we continued like this for several minutes. She told me that if I couldn’t choose something simple like my dinner, I would have trouble with bigger decisions later in life. How true her words were.
All my life, I would tell my family and friends to choose for me, whether it be a meal or what to do over summer vacation. I rarely voiced my opinion – scratch that, I rarely thought up an opinion. Every question posed on me was answered with “I don’t know.” On the few times I actually had a choice I preferred, it became a small voice that was hidden by a larger one. I lived as a shadow, trailing behind others. I was a bystander in my own life.
The big consequences of my difficulty in decision-making appeared in 11th grade. My dream was to become a communications specialist or an education specialist. Therefore, I wanted to study in the Literature and Humanities Department (there are two main departments for Korean students: Literature/Humanities and Math/Science). However, my parents told me that I would be better off in the Math/Science Department, for I was way better in the subjects of that department and there were way more job opportunities graduating from there. In the end, my voice was shrouded by my parents’ and I went to the department of their choice. I suffered there. Although my strengths were in that department, my lack of enthusiasm and energy showed on the downward slope of my grades. It made me wonder if everything would’ve been different if I had just been stronger and louder in my opinion. If I had just made the decision myself.
There is no one in the world who knows me better than I do. There is no better person to be the main character of the stage in my life than me. I must take my stand and make my own decision with a strong voice. From now on, since I live my life, I will try to make all the decisions that lay out in front of me, and with certainty. I will choose what I will have for breakfast and what subject I will major in in college. I will learn to respect my own decisions and stay with them. I will step out of the shadows and become the master of my own life.