This I Believe

Kevin - Marlton, New Jersey
Entered on October 22, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

Just Gotta Be Yourself

High school can be a tough period of time for some people. In a school like the one I went to, many people are divided into groups. There are the football players, the emo kids, the preps, etc. and then there are the people who do not fit in a certain group, so they are considered the loners. One of the keys things that I believe is that you cannot fall into the trap that a clique gets you into. What a clique does is take away your personality, and you become a stereotype. Cliques take away from a person’s individuality.

I did not fall into that trap. You could not categorize me by the people I hung out with because I really hung out with everybody. I see myself as a unique person that anybody can get along with. I do not judge people by their outer shell, but the inside. I still had my best friends who were always there for me, but I also was with many other people. I partied with the football team, went to concerts with the guitar kids, dirt biking with the country kids, and flirt around with the cheerleaders.

The people I did not like had one thing in common, terrible personalities. Actually, they had none. You cannot go through life without a definition of who you are. If you hang out with one group and be yourself, but hang out with another group and act completely different, you are what I like to call fake. Being a fake is no way to live. Your true self is hiding behind a shell of characters that you play around different groups just so they like you. If they do not like you, forget them. If people do not like you for who you are, so be it. I am friends with people for who I am, not who I pretend to be.

To live life to its’ fullest, you have to learn to appreciate who you are. Who am I? I am a photographer, snowboarder, surfer, motocross rider, football player, guitarist, hockey player, future marine biologist, and then some. You cannot categorize me. This has been my philosophy throughout my entire life. You cannot limit yourself because of what others may think, because in the long run, they do not matter. The only thing that should matter in life is what you think and what you do.

Once high school is over and you have to do with the real life, it will not matter whether or not you were the stud quarterback in high school, the best singer in the choir, or the best at Halo. If you live to be seventy, high school is almost only 1/17th of your life. What does matter is what you make of your life and how you go on. If you feel like you had no friends in high school, do not worry about it. There are people out there that will appreciate and accept you for who you are. Be yourself in life, and you will find yourself to be a happy person with a great life.