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Writing an Essay about a Person Who Influenced Your Life

Whether you are writing an admission essay or an essay you have been assigned by your tutor in a class, the success of your work will be determined before you even start writing – determined by what you choose to offer as content. There are a number of mistakes one should avoid, along with a number of tips to follow in essays about a person who has influenced or changed your life.

The first intuitive response of many students to such an assignment is writing about a parent. There is nothing wrong with this. However, you should make sure to demonstrate that it was your parent who formed or contributed to your interests, abilities, and opportunities that helped you become a different person or made significant changes in your life.

Anyway, remember that there are countless categories of people you can choose from – parents and relatives, teachers, friends, historic personalities, political leaders, writers, artists, and celebrities. You can pick any of these categories and select the specific person who influenced you most.

A trap to avoid

You should not select a person without a clear understanding of what kind of result you can achieve. Through this influence, you should be able to demonstrate your strongest aspects, your creativity, your skills, your background, as well as any other qualities that make you unique.

If your core strength is your background and experience in a specific field, you should pick someone who evoked your interest to a particular field and routed you in that direction in your essay about this person that influenced your life

Thus, you will not only literally fulfill the task, describing a great person whom you would like to follow, but will also highlight the impact of the figure on your own life and the development of your own remarkable skills. After all, your ultimate purpose is to present yourself, even if it is done by demonstrating other people’s achievements.

Remember the meaning of the word “influence”

A person’s influence on your life implies a distinctive effect of the achievements, personal traits, life path and other facts of someone’s biography on your opinions, interests, and behavior. If there is a person you simply admire, it does not mean that the person has influenced you. However, if your admiration resulted in specific actions or a change in your actions, interests, and behavior, it means that the person has made a significant impact on your life.

Do not forget to give examples of those changes, which can include the improving of your behavior, acquisition of new personality traits, an ability to see and make use of the new opportunities, or a decision to attend a particular college. If all these changes occur due to someone else, that is what the influence entails.

Don’t try to sound impressive

Simply picking a renowned person does not mean you will make an impression on your readers. They know very well that Abraham Lincoln and Albert Einstein are admirable. That’s why you should be careful in selecting universally-known names, unless you can offer specific examples of how these people have really affected your life.

Influence should be your main focus

Do not devote the biggest section of your text to a description of how wonderful a person is. Try to talk about yourself instead. Focus on the specific impact this person has had on your beliefs and actions, and how you have become stronger or changed in the other way thanks to this person’s influence.

Write something no one else could write

Try to be as specific as possible, because otherwise you may sound dull and too predictable. Standing out among the hundreds of other students’ essays means offering examples and experience nobody else could give. You can hardly surprise your readers if you write that your parents have inspired you to work hard. But if you give enough unique examples, you can make your essay really impressive.


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