Who Are You?

By Ogboru Daniella Oluka

I can still remember my fist day in college, all the different faces. I felt weird; I was all by myself in a place I had never been in before.After a few days I started meeting other Africans, and I felt a bit more at home. I soon started noticing some differences–some good, others bad. I had to sit back and ask some question; one of the question I asked is, “who are you?” I asked that question because I noticed a lot of things around me. I noticed people trying so hard to be like others, trying so hard to fit in or be accepted. Why would you try to be another person? Why would you crave to be accepted by the next person? Why not be yourself and let people see your potentials? Being yourself is different from blending in. You can blend in without losing yourself. One’s identity is very important because it makes people recognize and respect you and it also make people see you for who you really are. It helps you stand out and make the right choices.

Originality is something that is very important because it helps you stand out of the crowd. We all cannot be the same. There are a lot of diverse cultures; life would be very boring if there was just one race. There are a lot of things others can learn from you because there are things you know or have experienced that others do not know about, especially people from different backgrounds and cultures. People can learn from you and you cannot know for sure how that knowledge might be helpful to them.For example, I am from Nigeria and a lot of things are different where I am from like the food, dance, music, values and beliefs. Some of the values I have learnt from back home are respect, gratitude and discipline. It is very important in my culture that you respect your elders and show appreciation when someone does something for you. Imagine if I started cursing or being disrespectful because I am in America and there is freedom of speech and expression, wouldn’t that be wrong? Knowing fully well that was not how I was raised by my parents.

Some people do not realize that when they go out of their way to be like others, people make fun of them.They could earn names like “wanna be”.Looking at it closely, is it not better to be yourself and let people appreciate you for who you are.? When you are not true to yourself can become stressed emotionally. Gradually you might start to lose focus, your schoolwork might start to suffer because you are focusing your energy on something that should not matter in the first place. Trying to be who you are not can affect yourself esteem,and it makes you question yourself because you begin to measure yourself by the standard of others.

There are people who take their quest for acceptance too far by making bad choices. There are people who, in an effort “to belong”, join bad gangs that commit a lot of crimes from armed robbery to murder and most times these confused individuals are used because they are easy prey.In cases like this, these people not only affect themselves, they also put the lives of others at risk.

We all should be proud of our identity; we should stand for something positive and not be extremist about it, because there are some people who hurt others in an attempt to be different ,like terrorists. People should learn to accept you for who you are because you are unique and you have something to bring to contribute.When you feel the urge or pressure to conform to the lifestyle of others,just ask yourself these questions. “who am I?”and “is it worth it?” most likely you will be able to get back on the right track.You will definitely be appreciated more when you distinguish yourself in a positive way. You can become a role model to other people around you;especially those who are struggling to connect with their identity. Do not get caught up trying to live your life in a way that is acceptable to others. Connect with your roots and live your life to the fullest.

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4 Responses to “Who Are You?”

  1. kell Says:

    This is a very important point that you are making, because a lot of people(students) out there tend to be a follower rather than a leader. They will change their behavior of discipline to being someone bad just to fit in with friends who act different.

  2. tybabie Says:

    i like the way you think i think everyone should like thewat they are and try to be themselves too. the world would be so boring if everyone was the same and tried to be each other. being unique is great and that only means that your special and different which is a good thing. I like your paper and personally from reading it it made me love myself even more thank you.

  3. Goony Says:

    yea, you are right. The only way to be accepted to the society is to be yourself

  4. novaboii get-em Says:

    So true if you don’t know yourself you don’t know nothing. This kind of reminds me of people in middle school because didn’t nobody know who they were in middle school. 1st quarter they would be geeky. 2nd semester they would be gothy. 3rd semester they would be skater. Then 4th they would be in a gang. Most people conform into some group because they do not really know who they are as a person.People say that college is where you really find out who you are and hopefully everybody will.

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