With the growth of social media in the past decade, it seems to influence most everyday thoughts/decisions that run through an individual's brain. Some of the most common I tend to run across are, "Will people enjoy what I post?", "Will I receive likes/recognition on the things I post?", or, what seemed to go across my head almost all the time, "What will people think of me if I post this/do this?"
This was a thought that seemed to cross my mind constantly, not only when I reflected myself through social media, but also in everyday life. It got to the point where I would consider almost every aspect of myself as a person: What I wore to school that day, did I seem smart in class, did people like me, did I seem cool?
I was so worried about what others thought of me, I eventually forgot what I enjoyed. I wanted to be so likable, that I eventually shoved the things I used to be passionate about into the back of my mind so I could form myself into a person that couldn't care less about wanting to express themselves, but rather wanted to make myself into someone I thought was considered "cool". It took me until college to realize that nobody cares about what you wore the very last day of high school. Nobody remembers the one time you stuttered while answering a question in your chemistry class. People remember the time you got so excited about seeing your favorite band in a concert, you cried. People remember your kindness towards others.
As cheesy as it sounds, since I've realized how important self-expression is, I've been able to "rediscover" myself. I've discovered how much I love photography, the feeling of being behind the camera to capture each perfect moment is so unbelievably exciting to me. I love art, I love feeling paint between my fingers. I love history, so much to the point that I can't imagine working in a field without it.
I can't imagine why I ever wanted to hide what I enjoyed, just to seem appealing to my peers. I've made so many life long friends since I've started college, just by being myself. Expressing your passions, doing what you love- that's what people remember. That's how you inspire others.