Monday, December 2, 2013

Be Better Than Before

"The only person you should try to be better than is the person you were yesterday." -Unknown

These past few years I have come to understand just what this quote is trying to say. Some people would see this quote and think, "It's not a competition between us and our acquaintances," and they would be right. But the way I see it that it is a competition... against yourself. It doesn't matter how other people see you, but the way that you see yourself is important. The only way that we can really and truly look at ourselves with confidence and admiration is to strive to become a better person each and every day.

When I say admiration, I do not mean vainly preening in the mirror every day before school, trying too hard to look stunning. It's not about the artificial glamor that we tend to think is necessary. It's good to look well-groomed, but the admiration that I talk about is admiration of your own attitude.

Only recently have I really been able to look at myself as a confident person. And even then, there are times where I feel shy. The most outgoing, social person has days like this, I am certain. Because we are all human, and we all make mistakes, and we feel like other people are constantly judging us for them. Some people do judge, and that is unavoidable. However, the people that really care accept you for who you are and help you to become better.

The more that I accept myself and acknowledge my flaws, the more easily I can try to fix them. The more that I willingly recognize my mistakes and admit them, the happier I am. Because then other people aren't telling me what to do and pointing them out to me. I already know about them, and I've faced them, and I'm working on them. There are always going to be people that judge and try to belittle us. Just don't let yourself become that person, because it is never worth it. Ever. People make different mistakes in life. Don't trick yourself into believing that you are better than someone because they did something you would never do. You, in turn, make mistakes that they don't make.

It's hard, because we are all human. But God gave us the power to overcome hard things. He gave us His son, who atoned for our sins so that we can repent and start over. I know that God doesn't want us to pretend to be something that we are not. He wants us to see our full potential. I firmly believe that we can not see our full potential unless we are striving to come nearer to God. Pray! Heavenly Father wants to hear from you. The confidence that God gives to his children as they come unto Him is true beauty. And when we have that, we can understand that it really doesn't matter what other people think. We just need to lift up others, and surround ourselves with those who will do the same for us.

God doesn't want this earth life to become a competition between us and our acquaintances. We aren't competitors, we are brothers and sisters working to return to our Heavenly Father some day. I know that this is true! I love the gospel. I say that a lot, but I don't think I could ever say it enough. And I know without a doubt in my mind that God is there for me and for anyone else who seeks Him. He loves me as He loves all of His children. He wants me to become the best that I can be, and that is all.

In short, just be yourself! Because as Dr. Seuss has said, "Those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind."

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