This I Believe

Evan - bayside, New York
Entered on September 5, 2007

The personal philosophy that I live my life by can be summed up in two important words; “Do you”. This concept of “Do you” stands for being your own person and doing what you feel inside regardless of what others may think. I believe it is really important to be true to yourself because the great thing about people is that everyone has something unique about them to bring to the table.

I would have to say that the summer after my first year of high school was a very important one for me. I consider it one of the biggest turning points in my life so far. Prior to that summer I was not a very confident person. I was always very concerned with how people viewed me and terrified of having a label attached to me. It was because of this that I seemed to hold back in how I presented myself in order to fit in. I was afraid to dress how I wanted to dress, be as outspoken as I wanted to be and do what I wanted to do because I was so afraid of being judged the wrong way. I wasn’t content with the person I was because I knew it was not me.

That summer I was a counselor in training (CIT) at the day camp I use to attend when I was younger. This was the first summer I had a job so the whole experience was completely new to me. I was placed in a group with ten campers and three other counselors. While I became close to all of my co-workers it was the senior counselor who had the greatest impact on me. He was one of the coolest people I ever met and he took me under his wing and taught me a lot about job. However, it was what he taught me about life that really helped me to change for the better.

There was one lesson in particular that really stood out to me. I don’t remember how the conversation was started or what it was about, but all I remember is him saying to me is “you gotta just do you kid.” This was quite possibly one of the most important and grammatically incorrect statements anyone has ever said to me. These words, “do you”, really began to hit home for me and the more I thought about it the more I understood the importance of its meaning.

It shouldn’t matter what other people think of you, because at the end of the day, you just have be yourself and do what makes you happy. We are human beings not robots. It really is a wonderful thing that we are all different in someway, so why not give people some insight into your own uniqueness. Your true friends like you for who you are not for someone you try to be. Those are the people it is best to surround ourselves with.

So I really started following this philosophy after that summer. It was hard at first to not care what people thought of me. Nevertheless, I eventually got the hang of it. I started to dress and act more like myself. I became much more outspoken and more confident about who I am. I feel as if people liked me better for it. I in no way lost any friends that I had before and I don’t know if I necessarily gained more then I would have. However, today I am a much happier, confident and better person than I was before and I feel that is really most important.