Writing a personal essay seems to be easier than ever – no difficult topics and unknown terms. However, lots of students stuck with it for some reason. The problem is that you should write about yourself in different papers, such as personal essays, bio notes, cover letters, resumes, etc.
The first thing you should strive for is to make your paper not boring. No one is excited to read personal stories, and if it is boring – you are doomed to fail.
So your task is to write an interesting story about you that would be interesting for your reader as well. If you struggle with it, no worries, you can use our guide and create a wonderful personal essay hassle-free.
Personal essay structure
The most difficult and tough task is always to start writing. But don’t worry, a personal essay is not very different from other essays; at least, it has the same structure. It means that your essay will have three main parts:
- Body part;
Let’s see what each of the parts should look like.
An introduction is always a hack that captures the reader’s attention. When it comes to an essay about yourself, it will depend on the scope. If you want to grab the attention of your reader from the very beginning, you should start with a personal life story or exciting event depicting your personality, life, or a certain state of mind as your characteristic.
Your introduction may contain the following information:
- Basic notes on your biography;
- Important context about your current position in life;
- Your personal dream, vision, credo, etc.
Once you got the attention of your reader with a fun, interesting, and eye-catching hook sentence in your introduction, you should logically move to your body part. Here you should somehow explore and expose the traits you mentioned in your introduction by adding more details. Make sure to add real-life examples to confirm the facts you state.
In your main body, you can highlight the challenges you faced, background, and experience that caused the evolution of those traits. Do not doubt to mention your achievements, interests, experience, and personal traits, qualifying you for a position. You should also mention how the given position is related to your purposes and aspirations.
The conclusion must be strong and leave the track in the minds of your readers. It can by no means be boring. Otherwise, you waste all your work done in two previous parts. The conclusion should be memorable and restate the key idea of your essay but less directly.
However, just restating your thesis from the introduction is not a good idea. You should go further – mention something open that makes your reader think of it. It can be an open question about someone’s biography or a dream that could be fulfilled.
Hacks to write a great essay about yourself
Now, as you approximately imagine how your essay should look like and what structure it has, here are some good ideas that should help you understand the purpose of the personal essay deeper and write a brilliant essay on your own.
Being honest in the essay about yourself is a must. You should not create some non-existing facts but be genuine in what you tell. Open your heart and mind to your reader. Otherwise, it won’t be interesting.
Yes, it might be a real challenge to talk about something very personal to unknown people, but this is what your personal essay supposes. Once you learn how to do it, it won’t be a problem even to write a huge autobiographical paper.
Focus on your achievements but don’t exaggerate
If this is a letter to an admission committee, you should focus on your talents and achievements, but do not forget about your hobbies and interests. You are not supposed to have some exceptional achievements now, so be natural and modest in it, too. By no means brag!
You should show what motivates you but not brag with your results. Not exaggerating is crucial. It would be great to remain objective regardless of your big achievements and talents. Try not to make an impression of an arrogant person.
Choose a narrow topic
If you want your paper to remain efficient, do not write on a broad topic. In that case, you will just write about everything and nothing at the same time. Your reader will get lost in your stories. And your purpose is to make a reader focus on something specific.
Unless it is not an autobiography, select just a few stories, aspects, or experiences that would help you deliver your message.
No, you shouldn’t write a boring autobiography with the dates and facts, but introducing yourself with a minimum of information is crucial. Also, keep in mind to know how much you expand. It depends on your topic. For some of them, it is good to keep everything precise, and for others, add a detailed description.
Ask people who know you well
People often find it difficult to write about themselves while they have no idea where to start and what to describe. For them, it is even difficult to understand what traits they do have.
If this is the case, don’t hesitate to ask people who know you to help you. Ask your parents, siblings, mates, friends, or colleagues to tell you more about you. Knowing how others see you is a valuable experience.
Things to avoid when writing an essay about yourself
When you write a personal essay, you should avoid certain things, too:
- Delicate topics. There are lots of delicate and controversial topics you’d better don’t touch in your essay about yourself. To these topics belong religion, politics, gender, race and nationality, income level, etc.;
- Clichés. You should avoid describing too broad and general topics and focus on something much narrower. Tell about very individual experience and unique stories.
Now you know what you should include and avoid in your personal essay. But let’s see some additional steps you should follow when writing this paper:
- Start with the addressee. It is crucial to mention who you address your essay to if you write a letter about yourself. If there is no individual, use some collective pronouns and words, such as Dear members of…, To whom it may concern, etc.;
- Introduce yourself properly, including your name and position;
- Think of your reader. You should know well who will read your paper and include related content;
- Self-advertise. You should show your strengths and even weaknesses, so think very carefully about how you will portray everything. Even if you are writing about the bad or sad experience, try to keep your paper realistic and positive;
- Don’t be afraid to cover weaknesses. No one likes reading about perfect people. Showing your weaknesses is a must while it shows how honest you are. But choose weaknesses that would not compromise your paper;
- Mention your purpose and motivation. Your readers should clearly realize your purpose and expectations;
- Be thankful to your reader. It is good to finish your letter with the words of being thankful to your reader for their attention. If it is a letter to the admission committee, don’t forget to state your contact details.
We hope these simple but helpful tips will become your best assistant in creating a great essay about yourself or a personal letter to the admission board. Remember that no one can create a perfect paper from the first attempt while it takes lots of time, effort, and patience. Of course, it also takes some writing skills.
If you lack the time or skills to write a good letter about yourself, you can always ask for the help of professional writers who will create a wonderful piece of writing based on your information, wishes, requirements, and deadlines.