Meaningful and Useless

“Be yourself”. Ever since I was a little girl, I was always told to be myself. I heard it from my parents, my teachers, my friends, and in the world around me. My friend would come up to me and ask “how do I get this guy to like me?”, and I would automatically respond with “just be yourself”. I had been trained to do so. It was a shortcut, a quick way to end a conversation and give meaningful, useless advice. Because no matter how many times people will tell others to “just be yourself”, the fact of the matter is that being yourself is not an option in the real world.

I’m all for individuality; really. I wish that I could just live life not caring about what people think of me. There’s only one thing standing in the way of me “being myself”: other people. I constantly compare myself to “others”. It comes to me instinctively, and no matter how conscious I am of the issue, I continue to worry about what others think of me.