This I Believe

Taylor - Cincinnati, Ohio
Entered on November 2, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
  • 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.

Self Improvement

I believe in self improvement. Almost everything I do is designed to make me better. It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as I come out a better person in my eyes. It could be as simple as resisting the urge to eat a piece of chocolate, or as big as changing my entire life style to conform to the ideals that I have chosen. I want to be the best I can possibly be.

I work hard in school, because I want to be better. A’s on everything are practically required. I don’t want to be ignorant; I want to improve my mind. The more I learn, the more I can hope to understand this world I live in. The more I understand, the better my beliefs. I constantly second guess myself, questioning every belief that I hold, looking for a weakness that I can shore up or change. I constantly look to the world around me, looking for what could compromise or improve me. Everything is a test of my character.

I also strive to improve my body. I take martial arts, and it hardens my body. When we do stance work, I try and get it as perfect as possible, even if it hurts. When we try techniques on each other, I try my hardest, even if I am tired. I try not flinch when I am struck. Pain makes me stronger, so I should welcome it. I have calluses and blood blisters along my hand where I hold my escrema stick or sword when I train.

I even apply this to my emotions. I check them, to see if there is any that are not good emotions. Jealousy, greed, lust, fear, laziness, these are wrong. How can I hope to make the more complex thoughts that make up me better, if I can’t control my most basic and unworthy emotions? Sure, everyone feels these emotions. That’s why I need to control them; they are animalistic and primitive, unworthy of this human mind.

These ideals may sound extreme to some, but they are the very core of me. It makes me happy to know that I have become a better person, or have accomplished something great. This is my code, and I shall try and follow it, because this is what I believe.