I wanted to talk about this earlier, but the Architects concert last night put a kibosh on that pretty easily (still super tired but I have another concert tonight, Mayday Parade wooo). Anyway, while I was watching the livestream yesterday, something Sean said really stuck out to me– Dave Grohl’s 4th key to success:
Don’t lose your personality.
I won’t lie, I missed the next 5 minutes of the stream because my mind held onto that and I couldn’t stop thinking about it.
Broad statements like this are meant to be understood through the filter of the person processing it. We all hear the same sentence, but, almost like a game of telephone, if we were asked to explain it to someone else, you’d think we have all been told different things. To Sean, he perceives it in reference to YouTube and how he doesn’t want it to change his core being. Me? It made me wonder if I even have a personality to lose.
The context of Dave Grohl even mentioning this is of course to not lose yourself pursuing your goals or dreams. My aspiration (I guess it could be classified as a dream or goal) is to be a psychiatrist and advocate for mental health, helping remove the societal stigma surrounding it, providing safe outlets for people to seek help, and promoting the idea that you cannot just throw pills at your problems to “solve” them. As someone who struggles quite a lot with mental illnesses myself, it’s a little unrealistic, but who knows what may happen in the future.
My point is, I am extremely passionate about mental health….but I also have the great joy and pleasure (note the intense sarcasm) of defining myself by my mental illnesses. If you asked me to describe myself, I’d list symptoms, not character traits. I’d tell you what I like, not who I am. I don’t think “personality” applies to me. How could I possibly lose it then? The situation is odd– in trying to help those who go through similar things I do, how can I create a balance between learning to identify myself outside of mental health and simultaneously being cognizant of and open with my mental health to make me better equipped to achieve my goal? *sigh* I’m rambling….anyway….
Self-awareness is an important thing for me so I can keep track of how I’m doing; if I notice the signs of me slipping or getting worse, I can try to stop its progression early before I spiral too badly. Unfortunately, it also allows me to recognize that I feel like a corpse my mental illnesses simply occupy. They’re terrible tenants and don’t even pay rent. Bastards.
I understand how important it is to hold onto your personality in light of whatever success comes your way, but I do also think it’s critical to figure out who you even are and what that personality is so you know what not to lose.
It’s hard to keep something you didn’t know you had.
(I apologize for putting this in the tag, but I get the feeling that Sean likes our input and opinions on these kinds of things, and this is quite interesting to think and talk about, so I thought maybe he’d like to hear mine….oh god, I’m not that important I’ll stop talking)