We have more faith in what we imitate than in what we originate

“We have more faith in what we imitate than in what we originate.”

Bruce Lee, 20th Century Hong Kong/American martial artist and actor

Image from Amazon

My wife and I are fans of the show American Idol. We have been watching it for many years and consider this year’s contestants to be some of the best.

The judges, mentors, and vocal coaches this season have been particularly prominent in helping the Idol hopefuls evolve and develop their own unique voices and styles.

When participants take the path of least resistance and safety by imitating the original artists they tend to fall by the wayside and get sent home.


Where have you placed too much faith in imitating others in your personal or professional life?

When and how would finding and expressing more originality offer greater rewards that are worth the risk?

Consider checking out Adam Grant’s book, Originals for more insights into being the one and only you.

“You do not have to be original.”

“You do not have to be original.”

—Seth Godin, American Author

The seven words of today’s quote would have been useful about ten years ago when I dipped my toe into the blogging world. How many of you, like myself, have an inner critic that shuts down your thoughts or at least your voice and what you have to contribute to the world?

Somehow many of us came to believe that unless our ideas were unique and ground-breaking, we would be better off bottling them up and leaving that kind of work to the geniuses and other “special” folks?

Each of us travels a unique path through life. No one else can tell your one-of-a-kind stories with all the ups and downs, twists and turns. Perhaps our own lessons learned and how we applied them makes us quite original after all!


How can you take off the pressure and necessity to be a stand-out or a beacon of originality and still put your unique fingerprints on the world?

Please consider replying to this post with your thoughts.

“The merit of originality is not novelty; it is sincerity.”

“The merit of originality is not novelty; it is sincerity.”

– Thomas Carlyle, Scottish philosopher and writer

One of the cornerstones to the value of coaching is the stickiness or sustainability of success that it provides.

An example of stickiness can be found in brand loyalty, to specific products and services that have stood the test of time.

Think about your own loyalty to specific brands, even when faced with the onslaught of novel and often catchy campaigns attempting to lure you away from these sincere and enduring relationships. To borrow a phrase used by one of the most successful brands in the world, we are looking for “the real thing.”


Take a few quiet moments over a weekend to write out your own original vision statement, based on your most sincerely held beliefs and values.

Consider doing this exercise with close friends or family members, to embrace the mutual merits of each person’s originality.

For example, my Life Vision is a healthy, peaceful, beautiful world of extraordinary relationships, great accomplishments, and integrity; an exciting world of respect, dignity, leadership, courage, and honor, where all people generously and passionately contribute their best to one another.