Having the courage to be original really means being brave enough to be yourself. Certainly this can seem daunting and frightening, because to really live as you are means opening yourself up to the judgement of others. It’s common to shield ourselves from others to some extent because let’s face it, who wants to be judged?
Each of us is uniquely valuable. So why hide the truth of who you are?
Imagine what it might be like if everyone truly knew you, inside and out, what wonderful things you’re capable of, and how fully human you are, just like them.
There can be a great, false comfort in conforming and keeping your head down. But when you do that, you sacrifice ever knowing your true potential. And you risk boredom too; when the path is fully laid out for you, there’s no adventure.
Living with originality takes some courage for sure, but the rewards far outweigh the penalties of hiding your inner self.
Being original has a lot of perks:
- Greater fulfilment and personal satisfaction. Life has more meaning when it’s 100% authentic.
- Increased charisma. People will find you more interesting and pay attention to you more. Authentic people are attractive to pretty much everyone.
- Greater ability to take risks and be creative. Your life will have more depth and you’ll experience more success in every part of your life.
- By being original, you stand a chance to change the world. And regardless of what you do, you’ll surely be remembered. Only unique people do great things. Average people do average things.
Try these ideas to cultivate your originality:
- Be aware of who you are inside. This may take some thought, especially if you spend all day working and all night watching TV or scrolling social media. Regularly spend quiet time with yourself. Contemplate who you are and what you stand for.
- Express yourself freely. Give your opinions without judging yourself, especially when you’re asked for them. Let people know what you think in a kind and respectful way. Allow yourself to have your own style, whether it’s your taste in music, your profession, or just what to wear today.
- Avoid worrying about others’ opinions. The big secret is that they’re probably worried about what you think of them. Chances are good that nobody is spending much time thinking about any of us. And there’s nothing more attractive to others than someone that moves through the world confidently and without apology. I love the quote by Terry Cole Whittaker: “What you think of me is none of my business.” It’s so true so the only opinion that matters (about things relating to you) is yours.
- Just be yourself and let the chips fall where they may. You’ll be surprised how easy it is once you try it. It’s analogous to being afraid of the dark; there’s simply nothing there to fear.
Consider famous people like Abraham Lincoln, Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, and others. Do you know of another person who is anything like any of them? They’re originals.
People who conform can never really stand out unless they’re in extraordinary circumstances. Maybe you’re not the next Albert Einstein, but how will you ever know if you fear judgment and standing out so you don’t do anything differently?
Being original is about having the courage to be yourself and letting the world know who you are. This isn’t always easy, but here’s another saying I love by Wayne Dyer: “Don’t die with your music still inside of you.” Let our your unique “music” out in the way that only you can.
Have the courage to be unique. You’ll live in an intensely fulfilled way and you’ll be remembered long after you’re gone.
Founder, The PBT (Post Betrayal Transformation) Institute