“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson
We’re all born the same way and we die the same way – alone in a vast world filled with all of these other life forms around us. Some like to think they’re the center of that world, but the truth is, we’re all very insignificant in the larger picture. We’re not even fragments of the larger picture, we’re tiny granules and it takes thousands and thousands of us to create a fragment. Which is not to say we’re not worthy or replaceable. We are who we are, we do what we do, and that can still make all the difference in the world because change comes individually. Yet if we all change in an individual manner, then everything has changed as a whole. Unity is what makes the difference, but that unit begins and ends with each one of us.
But the world nowadays doesn’t work that way. You’re born and you die alone, but in between you meet and forget lots of names, lots of faces, lots of characters. Some of them accept you for who you are, others don’t agree with who you are; some of them want to change you for the better, others want to change you for the worse; some of them won’t even pay attention to you, others will give you all the attention in the world. And while it’s up to you how to respond to any of those groups, you should never give up your own individuality and your own character.
“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.”
― Bernard M. Baruch
In a world where you’re being pulled from one side, pushed from another side, chained from a third side, and harmed from a fourth side, the impossible task is not allowing any of those sides to define who you are. Not allowing anyone or anything to alter what you stand for and what you want to do. Which is not to say you shouldn’t keep an open mind, without that you’re the equivalent of a stubborn mule not making any movement or progress at all. But your thoughts and your voice should forever remain yourself, and you should be the one who decides where you go, what you do, what and who you accept and what and who you deny.
It’s impeccably difficult to define yourself, and for that you need to be alone. You shouldn’t be lonely, you should learn to be and live alone, you should accept and enjoy your own company. You should discover what you love and what you hate, who you trust and who you don’t. On the other hand it’s ridiculously easy to forget who you are. It’s easy to get swept in the masses when all along you were trying to go opposite of them. And you can fix that by being alone and reminding yourself what you stood for.
“When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everyone will respect you.”
― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching
I may be away sometimes. You may not see me in a while, you may not hear from me in a while. It doesn’t mean I’ve forgotten who I am or who everyone else around me is, quite the contrary it likely means I’m reminding myself of that. Maybe I should be sorry from distancing myself from everyone and everything, maybe that’s wrong and I’m making mistakes, and maybe I should even feel bad about it. But I don’t, I’m not sorry. I’m fine and I’m happy, but if I ever need you, you know where to find me.