We all want to be unique, I know I do. I want to be the person that people remember, the person that stands out. However, sometimes we end up trying so hard to stand out that we end up losing ourselves in the process. There are a million quotes out there telling us how important it is to accept our differences and be unique. And that's great, it is, but with everyone putting pressure on us to be unique, suddenly it's becoming a goal rather than a compliment to who we are. I've recently found myself looking at myself, seeing that I'm pretty average, and being so incredibly disappointed about that, trying to look for anything, literally anything, that would make me more unique, even if I don't have a strong interest into it. As much as I want to be unique, the best way for me to stand out is by indulging more in my own personality rather than deliberately going after things for the sake of that goal.

I remember talking about marketing campaigns in class one day. Looking at the Share a Coke campaign and the Dove Real Beauty campaign, there are two different stories being told. The Share a Coke campaign makes us feel unique, special. Having your name written in the signature Coke logo font is personal, making the product seem like it's meant for you and only you. On the other hand, the Dove Real Beauty campaign highlights an inclusive effect. Seeing all kinds of races and body types is exciting to us because everyone can find themselves and see that they're included. While they may not see their actual selves in the picture, no matter who is looking at the picture, they can find someone that they share traits with, that is similar to them, making them feel like they can fit in, since they're included. Looking at these campaigns, I remember my teacher saying, "The thing about millennials is that they love to be included and to feel like a part of something, but at the same time, they love to feel unique." And that rung true to me.

I love feeling being able to be a part of something. I'm a part of the blogging community. I fit in with other bloggers as we tweet about how much we love Target and good selfie lighting. It's great to be surrounded by like-minded people that you can relate to. But at the same time, no one wants to be average, to fit in so well that there's nothing about you that makes you memorable or better than all the other people exactly like you. We strive to be unique, to stand out. 

However, sometimes, the things that we do in order to prove that we're different, that we're more than average, can cause you to lose sight of who you are. Parts of my personality fit in and that's great. And parts of my personality don't and that's completely okay. But when you're trying to purposefully stand out from the crowd, sometimes you can push too hard and find yourself becoming someone that's not exactly you. 

Maybe you decide to try something new or go after a goal, but sometimes you need to step back and make sure that those things will make you happy. I want to stand out as a creative and I want to appear to be unique. But if I change my voice and the topics that I write about, there's a slippery slope at hand. Eventually by following a voice that isn't mine, I could lose my own voice, my true sense of uniqueness in the process. While it's great to strive to be unique, I think that I'm realizing that being unique should not be a goal. If your goal is to be unique, then your other goals are dramatically shifted. All of a sudden, it's not about getting that internship so that you can learn more about your passions, it's about getting that internship so that your resume will stand out. By focusing on the goal of being unique, you're not putting your own interests and passions first, you're putting the perception that others have of you first.

Being unique is relative. Focusing on being unique means that you're focusing on how others perceive you. This causes you to have direction towards what others will find "unique" rather than what you truly want to be. Yes, it's great to be unique, but there are other ways to achieve that than putting that as your sole goal. If you only see the ways that you can make other people perceive your uniqueness, you can lose yourself. So how can you become unique without losing yourself? Focus on yourself, your own passions and interests, what drives you. The thing is, everyone's personality is naturally unique. By focusing on your own personal ambitions that make you happiest, the unique traits of your personality will naturally come out, which will consequently show others how much you stand out. If you want to be unique, don't make that the goal. Make the goals based on what you love, what inspires you, and what you care about. Make your goals based on authenticity. Trust that your own personality is more than enough to make you unique and bring those parts of you out. You already have the tools, you are already unique, it's only about expressing what makes you already unique so others can see it too. 

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