“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.” -Dr. Seuss
This quote from Dr. Seuss has always been one of my favorites. We all have personality traits that make us unique, for better or worse. What matters is that we embrace them and appreciate them for making us special.
So… how do we do that?
First, it’s important to start by accepting who you are and owning it.
If you want to dress a certain way, live your life a certain way, act a certain way, then own it. You need to live up to the person you put out there. You do this by accepting who you are. — Lauren Alexander
For example, I’ve always been the more responsible and organized one among my group of friends — so much, in fact, that during my senior year of college many of them called me “Mom.” I embraced it.
When we went on trips, I overpacked so we were prepared for everything. I carried everyone’s passports so they wouldn’t lose them. I was in charge of sunscreen and snacks. I made sure everyone made it home in one piece. When we got back from the trip, this carried over into our meetings. I was “Mom” for the entire semester. Even now, a year out of college, I still find myself doing mom things.
The truth is, I love being known “Mom.” I love that people look to me as someone who is so organized and responsible that they see me as a mother figure. I’ve fully embraced the nickname, because those traits are what make me, me.
Once you’ve accepted who you are, make a conscious effort to eliminate negative self-talk.
This is something that we all struggle with; you are certainly not alone in thinking down on yourself.
How many times has someone given you a compliment and you’ve shrugged it off? It’s okay to be humble sometimes, but you have to learn to appreciate your own hard work and efforts — especially when others are noticing it as well.
When you receive a compliment, reflect on the experience. Think about what you did to achieve that goal, and make a mental note of how well-appreciated it was. When you’re working on other things, you’ll have a little more confidence in yourself.
Realize that no one else’s opinion really matters.
Another way to embrace what makes you, you, is to simply stop caring what other people think about you.
Too often we get caught up in others’ opinions of ourselves, and as a result we censor ourselves and hide personality traits we think may cause others to laugh at us. This goes back to the idea of owning it.
Who cares what other people think? Are they you? Are they living your life? No.
Other people have their own personality traits and talents to worry about. Do you.
Get serious about your goals.
Now that you’re at the point where you know who you are and what you want to be, set goals for yourself and take serious steps to get to them.
If you want to be a writer, start writing. Seek out support groups and people who can help give you ideas and edit your work.
If you want to be a serious student or pursue higher education, think about your career path, your interests and personality traits, and make smart choices about the classes you take and how they contribute to that.
The most important thing to take away from all of this is that in order to embrace what makes you who you are, you have to be proactive.
Figure out where you want to go in life, and take steps toward achieving that. Find a way to make all of your personality traits, quirks, interests and hobbies work together.
Find ways to bring it all together, and then advocate for yourself. Develop your personal brand. Become an industry expert. Be honest and true to yourself, and live by Dr. Seuss’s words.