Ralph Waldo Emerson once said “Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
How incredible is that quote? We always think about following a good path in our lives, but why follow a path when you can “blaze your own trail” so to speak. I’ve had more and more moments lately where I think “I wish I could be as successful as them” or “I wish I could do the things that they do.” But what fun is that? Shouldn’t we strive to have people say things like that about us? Don’t we want to create the path, not follow it?
So many people today have embraced that quote without realizing it — Steve Jobs was one of the most incredible innovators of his time; Mother Teresa spent 45 years ministering to the sick, the poor and the dying; Oprah Winfrey (no matter how much I dislike her) created her own unique path over decades; J.K. Rowling wrote a crazy little series of books that made her a household name across the world.
I’m so inspired by people who aren’t afraid to face criticism and the possibility of failure — who embrace what they believe in to tell a story through their own lives — stories that we can look at and say “If they can do their own thing and inspire people, why can’t I create my own path?”
“Insist on yourself; Never imitate… every great man is unique.” – Emerson