This was my entry to an essay contest. What do y’all think?
The most important part of life, or its destiny, is truly understanding oneself and choosing the right path to progress in. That level of self-actualization can be attained only when you are true to your own self. This Shakespearean quote insists on the very same idea.
The importance of originality
All the 7 billion people in this world have different perspectives and desires. While everyone goes on about in this rat race to be the best, what they fail to realize is, being the best is less about comparing yourself to others but more about being the best you can be and utilizing your full potential.
It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation
– Herman Melville
Although it is easier to simply be another voice in the “brilliant” crowd, isn’t it simply better to have your own opinion? It would be a waste of intelligence to suppress your ideas out of fear of being judged. Possessing the grit and determination to voice your thoughts without any regard for the criticism it may bring is indeed a mammoth task. Perhaps that is why they say the brave are the most rewarded.
Another important thing to be noted is that there is a huge difference between being an original and being different. A clown most definitely stands out in a black and white ball, but that doesn’t make him the star of the evening. There’s a time and place for everything and everyone.
Our dreams make us
At school, besides Science and Math they also teach us to dream. Right from kindergarten we develop hopes and dreams of the person we’ll grow up to be. As children we possessed no deceit, it was just pure ambition and everyone only wanted to be what they really wanted to be. Then we grew up with the reality of the world closing in on us and our priorities changed. Now everyone only wants to be whom the people around them like. I think living life to please others, is an utter waste of potential.
Our dreams define us and who we can become. It is necessary to be true to ourselves and pursue our own interests for that is our destiny. Just because your dream is different from anyone else’s it doesn’t make it any less credible. The general perception that the common choice is the wiser choice is very flawed. All dreams are real and worth pursuing as long as they’re yours.
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
– Robert Frost, The road not taken.
Self-esteem is a prized possession
The primary goal in our lives, whoever we are is to be liked, to have friends, to be appreciated and trusted. We develop our character, personality, etc. to be known and praised as excellent human beings. Sometimes, to achieve that adoration we tend to change ourselves. Little by little, we end up changing a lot and entirely become someone else. Acceptance is the first step to success. Only when you accept who you are and learn to love yourself, you can even dream of getting others to do so. I believe that there is something good and worth appreciating in every human being in this world. So, we should work on understanding ourselves and accepting who we are.
Once we accept our limits, we go beyond them
– Albert Einstein.
Also, self-esteem and narcissism are two different things. People often mistake one for the other. Excessive pride and gloating never gets you anywhere. Besides respecting who you are, humility is another necessary possession. Life isn’t meant to be wasted in underestimating ourselves nor in exaggerating our capabilities. Believe in yourself and be truthful. You are your best critic.
My experiments with truth
I take pride in being myself and letting my work reflect who I am. I think it is even right to say that being myself is my only choice because everyone else is already taken. As of now, I’m the 12th grade which I am told is the deciding year of a student’s future. I see everyone around me, my friends putting in their very best to achieve their goals. I see pure dedication and hard work, all with its own purpose. The most important decision we’ll be making this year is a career choice. All those childhood dreams, this is where we sort out what is our destiny and what goes into the trash.
I, personally, have made up my mind to choose based on one sole factor and that is, what I want. I don’t think it is fair to simply spend my whole life pursuing a career just for the money or the society’s opinion. We are given only one chance to live and I intend on making the best of mine. At present Architecture is what I have found the passion for and if things work out that is one of the things I’ll be doing with my life. I also hope to be a published writer one day.
Truth is the first lesson of morality and consequentially being true to yourself is the moral way to live because, you set your own standards and work on staying true to them. It is important to understand yourself because only then you can hope to understand the rest of the world. Acceptance is the path of progress and accepting who you are is the first step down the lane. Your values and perspective are different from everyone else’s. Embrace them, and you embrace who you are.
True morality consists, not in following the beaten track, but in finding out the true path for ourselves and in fearlessly following it
– Mahatma Gandhi.