Be pro-active about putting things right

PUBLISHED: 10:49 04 April 2007 | UPDATED: 21:02 26 October 2009

Empowered debates at uni

Empowered debates at uni

I HAVE always been a fairly quiet person. I d always rather listen than talk, and I would never openly disagree with people, even if I was screaming an argument in my head. If someone told me something that I thought abhorrent, instead of protesting, I w

I HAVE always been a fairly quiet person. I'd always rather listen than talk, and I would never openly disagree with people, even if I was screaming an argument in my head.

If someone told me something that I thought abhorrent, instead of protesting, I was more likely to mumble something noncommittal like, "Really? Oh well I suppose you could..." and inside be cursing my lack of guts and the ability to stand up for myself, which I thought I fundamentally lacked, and always would.

These days, however, I am finding myself in the middle of empowered debates, or even more shockingly to the voice inside my head - arguments!

I have found that I actually have views and opinions on things (see above) - things that I used to think only grown-ups cared about, or knew enough about to argue for or against.

Not only this, but I find myself complaining in restaurants when given a wrong order, or in shops when staff are rude.

Complaining? Me? I never thought there would be a day!

I think I even scare my boyfriend sometimes when his formerly meek girlfriend goes on one of her 'rants'.

"You've got to stick up for yourself darling!" I found myself imploring him, after some trouble at work.

I have to admit, I do find it quite liberating, getting all fired up about this or that injustice, but I am still amazed at how much I have changed since leaving home to come to university.

I had always heard that going away to university was a huge, life-changing experience, and of course it is, but it's taken me a while to see how much it has changed me.

My course, no doubt, has played a big part in this (a shy journalist is hard to find, after all), and I have to keep up with what's going on in the world.

But whether you do it through university or under your own steam, being aware of the world around you, with all its problems and flaws, and being pro-active about putting them right is something every one of us should do.

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