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The Daily Eastern News

Credit yourself for who you already are

Carole Hodorowicz, Columnist

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“Nobody’s perfect.”

I have found those two words spoken to me on several occasions. Whether it is through advice after a less than desirable situation I found myself in prior or it is accompanied by laughter after I embarrass myself, that phrase has a habit of popping up.

That phrase is something I can always count on the people around me to say to uplift me in one way or another. It is a phrase I find myself saying to others for the same effect.

But when I am alone and I need a brief moment of encouragement, those two words never pop into my mind, let alone reach the tip of my tongue.

These two words are meant to comfort us as much as they are to humble us. As humans, our live are our personal ongoing experiments to get something right, to be someone, to make this time count.

However, while we try to find ways to improve ourselves and reach the next step closer to these goals, we often lose sight of who we already are.

Much like our fingerprints, we are all individually unique. There are over 7 billion of us crowded on this planet and with that, there are also over 7 billion attributes that make us all capable of doing extraordinary things.

Too often, we compare ourselves to others. Too often, we let this blind us from our own strengths.

I know I am guilty of this on several degrees.

My entire life, I have never been good at math. Every math class, formula and number I encountered was a reminder that I was stupid. No matter how hard I tried to grasp a subject, I found myself defeated and surrounded by nothing besides insecurity and pencils with worn down erasers and broken tips. Every day of school when it was time to crack open my math book, I found myself crawling into a shell to mask my embarrassment and hide how lost I was in class.

It was not until high school that I realized fate a different equation for me. Formulating concepts and ideas, adding words together and putting a pen to paper were the equations I was always meant to solve.

I found this talent and self-esteem later in life because I allowed for insecurities to out shine my strengths.

This is something I still find myself doing at 20 years old.

Whether I am battling with the mirror over my physical appearance or trying to suppress an internal conflict as to why I am not more like my peers I envy, I forget to give myself credit for who I am and what I can do.

Reminding ourselves of our strengths is something we should make time for in schedules every day. We set aside time to brush our teeth, but we do not set aside a moment to look inside ourselves and remind ourselves of the great things we have done and the great things we can do in the future.

With all of the pressure to be different and be successful, we forget that is what we already are.

You are not the only person grappling with this conflict. Be mindful with yourself and others. If you see something you like about someone, do not be afraid to tell them. Your peers need a reminder just as much as you do.

Be patient with yourself. Give yourself a break instead of choosing to sweat the small stuff.

Although you may be your harshest critic, you are also your strongest ally.

Carole Hodorowicz is a junior journalism major. She can be reached at 581-2812 or cdhodorowicz@eiu.edu.

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The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.
Credit yourself for who you already are