Tu te prends pour qui?  This is an expression that they have in France, where I was born.  It means “who do you take yourself for?” and it is really a way of saying, “you’re not that special.” In my travels I have heard similar expressions and attitudes in many parts of the world.

Who do you take yourself for? It is an exceptionally simple question that should take your whole life to answer. It is also a question that you should never be scared to answer in any of its forms. “I am ME, and there is only one of me on this whole planet.  Even if you tried to copy me you would never be able to.”

A few years ago many of our students stood up on stage to read aloud “I Am From” poems.  What struck me even more than the pride that the students had in their own heritage, was their courage to stand up and say “Hey, this is how I am unique.” When I was your age I have to admit that being different than everyone else was not my primary goal. I wanted to be just like everyone else, but as I got older I realized that all the things that made me different also made me stand out (starting with my name).

It is one thing to know that you are different than anyone else (as we all are) but to appreciate that everyone else has something unique to offer, and that the appreciation of all these differences can create a community that is richer and stronger than any other, will be the key to your success. Differences are not something to be tolerated, but something to be celebrated.

À la prochaine,