Always be yourself, unless your self is an ignorant douchecanoe.
In that case pick a person that seems to be charming, kind and successful and be that person instead. Regular or famous. Doesn’t matter. Why do you like them? Are they brave? Loyal? Creative? Assertive?
Think about it.
Emulate their best qualities. No point in digging deep and analyzing it, you don’t need to know the whys or hows or maybe they’re miserables and it’s all a facade, because this isn’t about them, it’s about you.
For example maybe you admire this persons creativity, maybe they’re a painter but you haven’t so much as picked up brush. Who cares? give it try! Take a class. Go to drink and draw.
Maybe you won’t like it but maybe you’ll meet someone who makes jewelry and you find out that’s a thing you do like.
Maybe this person seems very socially adept. Charming people like to engage with people. Give more compliments! To strangers even. See a person in a nice dress, tell them. Compliment someone’s hairdo. Be emotionally generous.
Study the non awful person, let them inspire growth instead of envy, be honest but gentle with yourself and soon you will also be non awful.
THEN you can be yourself.
Look. I just saved you about $5 million dollars in therapy and quacky self help books.
-for all the careers and education and ideas and opinions you’ll form, to the demands for your 5/10 year life plan, goal maps, future projections and personal essays about ‘where you see yourself’ from family and bosses and friends and strangers, the most powerful phrase you’ll ever utter in response is “I don’t know”. Despite what you’ve been told it is not a phrase mumbled by the meek or weak willed but a rallying cry for the bold.
Even though you will probably never ‘know’ anything, saying as much opens the door to the possibility you one day might.
So the next time someone asks you what you’re doing with your life/what is your career trajectory/who you are/what you want/where your relationship is going/coke or pepsi or any number of bullshit things that aren’t any of their business, loudly and unabashedly scream “I DON’T FUCKING KNOW!!” as joyfully as you possibly can.
Let them eat 10 year plans.