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So often when asking advice on how to make it through a difficult situation, we are told “Just be yourself.” Well, if you’re heading to a job interview or going on a first date, that advice might not be much help. And it’s even worse when you’re young because your self is still developing! We can agree that who we are is made up of our feelings, preferences, beliefs, how we think, and what we like to do, among other things. Since I, myself, have given this advice many times to young, impressionable truth-seekers, I thought it was important to figure out how exactly someone can do this. Here are some questions that I believe can help to uncover a person’s true essence.

What are your beliefs, morals, values? How do you view politics, the economy? Are you religious, spiritual, or do you believe that this is all there is?

Are you concerned about the environment? Do you love nature and animals? Are you concerned about global warming, poverty, and war?

Are you outwardly affectionate toward those you love? Are you involved in the lives of your family and friends? Or are you shy, somewhat of a loner?

What are your favorite foods? Are you health-conscious? How do you feel about chocolate? Are you a sweet or salty person?

Are you eager to try new things? A real party animal? Are you more comfortable people-watching from the sidelines? Or a homebody?

What kind of clothes do you prefer? A t-shirt and Levis? Are you always dressed to the nines, or somewhere in the middle?

Do you find it easy to join a conversation? Do you feel strongly about certain issues and simply have to tell people how you feel? Or do you keep your thoughts and ideas to yourself?

Do you cry at sad movies? Do you love to be scared? Do you hate violent or sexually explicit movies?

Do you enjoy television? Watch the soaps or Lifetime movies? Do you like reality TV or take advice from Dr. Phil?

What kind of music do you like? Do you enjoy easy listening, country boot-tapping, or rocking out?

Are you thirsty for knowledge? Like to read and write? Are you inquisitive? Suspicious?

What are your passions? How do you like to spend your spare time? Do you like sports? The Yankees?!

What makes you get up in the morning? What inspires you? What brings you joy?

What makes you happy and laugh out loud – for that matter, how do you laugh? Do you giggle quietly or really laugh from your belly? In order to tell if you are taking life too seriously, look in the mirror and check the following:

Is your reflection smiling back at you?

Do you see a crazy hairdo and runny makeup?

Is there any type of food on your clothes?

If you answered “no” to these questions, then you gotta loosen up! Now we’ll examine your experiences.

Does aggravating the kids entertain you?

When somebody trips or falls in front of you, do you laugh?

Do you derive pleasure out of playing tricks on people (scaring them, hiding their keys, giving them shocks from the static electricity in the carpet)?

If not, then you’re missing out on all the fun!

All of these things (and more) make up who you are. When choosing friends or a mate, it’s easy to put yourself and your needs aside to show others that you care. And when considering a direction in life, it may be difficult to maintain your individuality. But never give up what makes you YOU to try to please someone else or live up to another person’s expectations. I think since the world gives so much credence to the rich and beautiful celebrities, it almost becomes normal to want to emulate those in the spotlight and follow the so-called pop culture icons. But think about this. What if

Isadora Duncan stopped dancing?

Rosa Parks moved to the back of the bus?

Jonas Salk gave up researching?

Lucille Ball suppressed her zany sense of humor?

Oprah ignored her dream of broadcasting?

Elvis stopped gyrating?!

The world would have lost out on greatness! These people were all true to themselves and, as a result, touched the lives of millions of people and many generations. So nurture your talents and embrace who you are! Who knows where your passion and imagination might lead?

write by Dominic

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