This I Believe: be yourself

Rozina - Glendale, California
Entered on February 27, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
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This I Believe

I believe that people should be who they really are. Some people pretend to become someone else other than themselves. To me, this is very unrealistic and I do not know why anyone would try to be someone whom they are not. You would not know who your real friends are and you would never be able to act like yourself. You would also be pushed into doing things that you would not usually do. You should always be yourself.

First, by not knowing who you are or where you fit in, you might resort to pretending to be someone else to make some friends. To me, this is a very poor choice to make. Many people do this just so they can be “popular.” When someone does that, they forget who they truly are. They also may lose things rather than gain things. For example, imagine there was a very unpopular boy at school who hung out with a bunch or nerds one year. The next year, he came to school with a new, cool haircut and new clothing. Instead of hanging out with his former friends, the “nerds,” he hung out with a new group who constantly made fun of the “nerds.” When the boy made his decision to hang out with the new group, he left behind his real friends. Since his new friends make fun of his old friends, in reality, they are making fun of the boy. He left his real friends behind just so he can be popular. Now, he does not know who his real friends are.

Next, changing who you are does not only mean changing your appearance. It also means that you are also changing your personality. When someone changes their personality, they are changing more than that. They could even be changing their lifestyle. If this is a true change, there are no problems. But if it a forceful change just so you can fit in with the popular group, it could lead to serious consequences. Pretend that you have changed something about yourself. Now, you are who you made yourself; whether it’s by treating people differently or by disliking things that you may have originally loved. The consequences caused by these actions include allowing people to see you differently.

Finally, by pretending to be someone else, you could be putting yourself or others in danger. You would be doing things that you would in reality never dare to do. For example, there was a girl who went to a party with no parental supervision. She met her old elementary friends there. One of her friends offered her a cigarette. She is smart, but she does not want to seem lame and disappoint her friends. So, instead of saying “NO”, she accepts it and becomes addicted to it. She could have made up an excuse or have done something to prevent smoking. Yet, because she wanted to impress her old friends so much, she made a terrible decision in her life. Altering the way you act around certain people could result in deadly decisions.

Once, in my middle school, I knew this one guy. He hung out at the skater table. One day, he was accused of stealing one of his friends’ cell phones by other people who sit at the same table as him. He was kicked out and he later started hanging out with my group. I did not really know him, but he explained how he did not steal anything from anyone. He also explained how now that the people whom he thought were his true friends never really liked him. He then saw who his friends were and those who were not. This shocked me. I learned that day that people may not always seem to be who they are and by doing that can hurt someone emotionally and physically.

All in all, I believe that people should not pretend to be someone they are not. In my opinion, everyone should be themselves. You should not let influences change you in any way. It may lead you to live a phony, made-up life. You would not know who you really are or the joy of knowing who are your real friends. Do not forget the harm you are doing to yourself and others. The best thing to do, is to be your true self, no matter what happens!