Unfortunately, I have a tendency to look around at other people and wish that I was something more, or someone different. At the school I go to, there are many talented and skilled people, and one can often feel a little inadequate or incompetent. I am usually very confident in myself and my abilities, but every once in awhile I hear myself saying, “Why can’t I be more like them? Why can’t I have those talents? Why can’t I be better at this?” And my personal favorite, “Why can’t that happen to me?” I find myself suddenly thinking of everything that I don’t have or that I’m not, and I forget the things I do have, or who I am.
I don’t know if you have ever felt the same, but I think it’s more common than we would like to admit. These thoughts haunted me for a long time, and I didn’t know how to escape them. They made me feel helpless, worthless, and lonely, and I wanted it to stop. It wasn’t until I learned to accept myself for who I am and what I was that these feelings stopped.
Similarly, there’s a character from Disney Pixar’s Wreck-It Ralph that was goes through the same thing. Ralph is a character of video game in the movie. He is the “bad guy” in his game, but he wants to be a “good guy” instead. He goes throughout the movie to try a prove himself something he’s not, a “good guy”. It isn’t until the end that he learns what I need to learn a long time ago. Here’s the clip where he finally understood and learned to accept himself for who he is.
This part in the movie hit me at my core. Many times throughout my life I had felt like Ralph, wanting to be something or someone else, wanting to be better, wanting to be acknowledged. But, we must grasp a deeper understanding of who we are, an acceptance of ourselves, and an appreciation for what we have. There is no one I’d rather be than me!
In the Book of Mormon, the prophet Alma had a similar experience to mine and Wreck-It Ralph’s. Alma has a desire to be more than he is and exclaims, “O that I were an angel, and could have the wish of mine heart, that I might go forth and speak with the trump of God . . . and cry repentance unto every people . . . but behold, I am a man, and do sin in my wish; for I ought to be content with the things the Lord hath alloted unto me” (Alma 29: 1-4). Even though Alma wanted to help others repent and come unto God, his desire was beyond his capabilities and he wasn’t satisfied with his current situation.
The Lord wants us to be happy. He wants us to be satisfied with ourselves and with what we have in this life. I know that now, and I understand it. We are so much more than what we know. We are children of God! We are so blessed, and we have many gifts and talents that we have been given. Why should we want to be anything or anyone different? Accepting yourself takes time and understanding, but the Lord will help us as we try to do so. Then we will be able to say with Alma, “I know that which the Lord hath commanded me, and I glory in it” (Alma 29: 6-9)
Let us remember who we are! Let us remember what we can do! Let us remember why we are here! I know that as we do so we will be happy, confident, and able to overcome what obstacles that lay before us. We will be able to say with Ralph that “there’s no one I’d rather be than me!”