Summary: This post is about writing personal essays. When one thinks he or she should reveal everything, there is a point when facts become unsettling. Thus, to help you know when a personal essay is just too personal, take a dive in, read and find out.
Essay writing: when it’s just too personal
We all are familiar with essay writing, at least after having passed through different levels of schooling. And given that by the time one graduate he will have crafted different types of essays such as narratives, persuasive, argumentative, informative and many others, the experience levels also vary, albeit, most rules of literary composition such as the need to proofread and edit a story apply across the board and all through. Today, buying college essays has become a common practice among students, and which includes personal stories that sell one’s brand, image, and identity.
However, there are days when there is a limitation to which an essayist reaches. For example, while college application essays ought to provide an admission board with insights into who we are, how we feel, what we do, personal achievements, real-life experiences and how they changed our personality, are we revealing unnecessarily too much information? This is a question that continues to elicit mixed reactions among scholars and students, but whose resolution is quite elusive. This post explores essay writing, and especially when it is just too personal. Thus, take a look at the following instances.
Writing about mental health
Discussions on mental illnesses are often emotive as they get, and with rising depression stats, the silent tears of victims are never a manifest until when things get out of hand. From attempted suicides, violence, alienation to the feeling of self-pity, mental disorders are things that continue to ravage the well-being of today’s young generation. The question is should a college applicant who has been a victim of say, emotional breakdown share such experiences in their essays?
Well, it is often a tricky situation yet a compelling circumstance in which students crafting admission essays find themselves, and given the personalized nature of these write-ups, including a history of mental health may end up being the stumbling block between you and college entry. Thus, mental health is one such area that counts as too personal and not necessarily important in application essays. No one would wish to be denied a chance by a University admission board that is of the opinion that a history of mental disorder is a limiting factor when it comes to academic success.
A history of misunderstanding with teachers
While personal essays should be a revelation of one’s true character, they ought to paint the bad and put forward the good and desirable traits. You should, for example, talk about past academic and life achievements, things that motivate you, and what one intends to achieve after getting admitted into college. However, all these should not overshadow the fact that everyone, before college studies, passes through high school, a stage reminiscent of unsettled and energetic adolescents. You may have been at loggerheads with your high school principal and even faced disciplinary measures. However, when crafting a personal essay, this bit of information is too personal and could end up being a stumbling block. You wouldn’t wish to be viewed as a difficult person who is hard to cope with.
Aggressive and undesirable character traits
We all have skeletons in our closets. The dark secrets and dirty linen we would rather die keeping to ourselves than expose to the world. The world can be harsh and people are naturally judgemental. As they say, what you say is what you are, and what do think or do, you become. These are not mere sayings, but rather, depict one’s character at a deeper level. So, should your story contain this bit of information, about your character and how aggressive you can become when provoked?
Well, getting a rare chance of joining an Ivy League college or University comes with crafting a personal, often referred to as an admission essay. However, laying bare everything, including undesirable character traits and instances of past fights is not going to be personal, but rather, too personal to earn one the ultimate price.
The bottom line
Personal essays remain pivotal anchors in college admission processes. But, knowing when you are getting cozy with the truth about things that will be read by someone who hardly knows your character at a deeper level could be your greatest undoing. If you must, then journalistic approaches where third person pronoun is used as a persona or by-lines without ever mention your name can do the trick. Moreover, disclaimers such as, ‘Names used in this story do not represent the true identity of the writer,’ can always help you avoid unsettling writing moments. You may also want to use paperwritingpros.com to help you come up with a perfect story.