Eric Richter ’23
The phrase “be yourself” is thrown around plenty when it comes to what one should focus on the most in their life. It’s said on kid’s TV shows, social media, and in regular discussions, but why exactly is this useful advice in the first place? “This person has done so many great things in their position so I want to be just like them, in that same position” you may say to yourself and I think that many hold this same belief. While it’s great to look up to those as inspiration for what you want to do, sometimes that mountain is just too high to reach the top.
It is so easy to simply compare oneself to those around you, but sometimes this can lead you in a different direction; what once was inspiration becomes a sort of jealousy. It becomes less about wanting to be in the same spotlight as that person and more about “why can’t I get into that spotlight”. While for many it is to be assured that they will be able to make it to the top of this mountain, for others that may not be the case.
Maybe there’s an artist you’ve been trying the greatest amount to reach the same greatness of art or music they have. However, it just seems that you’re not creative enough to be able to do so and while you are good at leading and teaching others, you feel as if that won’t get you anywhere to that goal. In that case you can find a different solution to that problem, teach those around you of those techniques you tried so hard to master, and lead them to the dream that you wished to fulfill in the past. Sometimes you just have to accept you’re not good at drawing or maybe can’t draw at all, but use what you were given, to maybe even be something greater.
It is of the utmost importance to do this in our lives, otherwise it will lead to one of jealousy and unfulfilled dreams. What it means to be “oneself” is to do what you do best and use that skill to be who you want even if that skill seems useless at first. You should still focus on improving yourself but we all have our strengths and weaknesses. You should not focus on trying to climb the mountain with your weak arm, but your strong one.