Trying to be original

I waste a lot of time and energy trying to be original. The thought of being mediocre, trite, or derivative in my actions, beliefs, writing, or anything fills me a sense of dread. Who will remember me if I’m boring and unoriginal? What can I say I have accomplished if I just retread ground that’s already been walked? How can I live with myself if I’m not a unique, individual self?

So I turn my head over and over about how I can take a position that’s different, how I can stand out, how I can do something that others will see as unique and remarkable. I wince when I realize a post of mine had already been said before. I grow upset with myself as I struggled to come up with something new and exciting.

Lately, I’ve begun to snap out of it.


Lately, I’ve been wondering more, what if I just stopped trying to be original? What if I stopped putting pressure on myself to be unique or say something new?

What if instead I simply tried to be useful? What if instead I oriented my work around how I can contribute rather than what accomplishments I can accumulate, or how I might be remembered.

I am beginning to realize that trying to be original is the least original thing I can do. It is doing what nearly everyone does, tie themselves up in knots over me, me, me; obsess over how I can be revered, remembered, seen.

No, I’m not going to waste time trying to be original anymore. I am going to try to contribute. I am going to try to make it all about something bigger and more important than myself.

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