I’ll do me

A few weeks ago I heard a younger woman state that she absolutely despised the phrase “You do you.” It surprised me because my first impression of it leaned toward grace: allowing someone to be their true self.

When I was traveling last week, I saw the slogan printed on a hotel advertisement at the airport. I find it silly when companies try to give a nod to their relevancy by using something like that—because once something is hip and widely known (meaning: I’ve heard it), it’s rarely used.

 Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels
Urban Dictionary said it was something you reply when people ask for advice but won’t follow it. Apparently, it belongs as a flair on every MD’s lapel.

Because of the advertisement, I couldn’t get it out of my mind.

I asked my son what he thought about the phrase and he said it was extremely generous, one of the kinder things you could say to someone. Sort of “live and let live” in modern terms. I had to wonder why it bothered the girl and I realized how many ways it could be used.

When my husband and I started talking about it, we mostly came up with variations like, “After you do you, will you do me?”

Now, I see “you do you” as a statement to make when you have nothing invested in the other person’s outcome. You can even say it to dismiss someone’s personhood, not just when you disagree.

Bottom line: the speaker’s heart changes every mantra/movement invented by man. No matter how pure the origins, something noble can become evil in evil hands. Or ridiculous…

It has made me consider how often I’ve judged the origins of something based on the hands currently wielding it.

2 thoughts on “I’ll do me

  1. Letty says:

    “the speaker’s heart changes every mantra/movement invented by man.”

    It is not what we say but how we say it. The intent of the heart can be heard in our tone of voice at times.

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