The Power of Individuality
I was born in American Samoa, an island far off in the South Pacific. Adopted at birth, I never had the chance to meet my biological parents. In some ways I have missed out on indentifying myself with my mother’s smile or father’s laugh and in lieu of their absences I have learned to stand alone. When I say, “stand alone” I’m referring to discovering my own self and creating a person that is different, which is why I believe in the power of individuality. My parent’s values of self-respect and independence have transformed into my own beliefs. Their endless efforts to support my brother and I has inspired me to become the person I am today. The hard work and time they have put into what they enjoy doing, without pleasing anyone else but themselves, has taught me the value of dancing to my own tune. I am no longer trying to fit in with the crowd and go with the grain; I like to go against it.
As a minority at school and in my town, I’ve learned to embrace the stares and transform them into gazes of curiosity. I am no longer trying to mask my difference, but instead looking to magnify my individuality. This power has allowed me to be proud of my culture and not shy away if someone asked where I am from. In fact, I feel a sense of pride representing my heritage miles and miles away in a foreign country. To the public I am a twist and I love it. So for those that might feel like I did, isolated and separated from the crowd, work with your differences. Your situations might be different than mine, but work with what God has given you, don’t be ashamed. Be adventurous and bold. Don’t let the differences hinder who you want to be. Utilizing your individuality, you boost your self-esteem and confidence and ultimately your outlook on life will become more positive. Think of those that have made a difference in the world. They are leaders in the eyes of the public because they controlled what they wanted to control. Their individuality empowered their leadership that is recognized today. You don’t have to captivate the world with your individuality like Martin Luther King Jr. or Abraham Lincoln did, you can lead a smaller group such as your peers, co-workers, family members, but remember it has to start with you and you alone. This I believe.