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  • I have always loved being a student because so much of excelling in school involves following instructions. In applying that mindset to life, I have spent much of my life trying to find a perfect person, someplace in the world, who is doing life "right". You see, if I find that person, I can excel in the school of life by following their instructions for life, and then all will be well.

    Do you sense that this story might be about my realization that such a mindset is ripe with inefficiency and only asks for disappointment? Well, you are correct!

    This fruitless search has left me feeling leaderless, hopeless, without someone to strive to emulate. Though my life is filled with people who lead lives that I look up to (my parents, the dalai lama, teachers and mentors who are strong and fearless and beautiful), every time I try to land on a role model, I find that it stresses me to the core because trying to be like someone else feels strange and odd and contrived. In time, I have learned there is a very distinct difference between admiration/inspiration and replication. I cannot believe it has taken me so long to learn this lesson, but I am so relieved that I have. Just as food cooked together imparts flavor on one another, everyone that I encounter in life inspires me in one way or another, whether I want them to or not. I have learned to use better judgement in what I can control, and embrace what I cannot. That is the essence of my individuality. In this lesson I have learned that I do have a role model. That one person out there, someone some place out there in the world who I would really give my all to be ME.
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