01/04/2013 16:51 BST | Updated 01/06/2013 06:12 BST

Let Your Banner Fly

Ana's Thought: "The Greatest Art is a true mirror of the Artist's soul--out of step with the fashion of its time but in step with timelessness."

Shakespeare famously wrote, "To thine own self, be true." But when your words and actions are met with negativity, you may feel your spirit sinking down. How can we learn to withstand the withering blows of doubt, both from ourselves and from others?

When waves of doubt wash over you, look upon history for inspiration. Uniqueness and diligence are the co-authors of all progress, the forces sculpting cultures across the world. Those few bright runners carried within them the courage to speak, experiment, and create freely, even in the face of rejection. In doing so, they elevated the consciousness of all. They are the stars we follow when we cannot find our way, the charts with which we plot our course.

Galileo's revelations about the workings of the solar system were rejected by the people of his age. He was considered a heretic and was cast out from society. James Joyce, whose works have been subject to praise and scorn alike, did not let the opinions of others halt his creation. Curie, Van Gogh, Woolf, Keats, Thoreau... We have no shortage of fantastically unique--and, at times, divisive--individuals to study!

The great Mystery that is the Wisdom of the universe places the heaviest burdens on those who are destined to prove their strength and overcome - for they also possess the greatest promise. The power to rise when adversity calls is part of each of us, and it is both hardy and delicate; we must care for it tenderly so that it will come to bear fruit. Always recall that your soul is a precious creation unlike any that has come before it in time. Written within it are the words of a truth that only you can know. We are called to celebrate the gift of individuality by sharing our unique truth with the world.

When you feel as though a shadow has been cast over you, do not surrender. Set your sights higher and no one shall be able to beat you down. Dare to fly your banner proudly! When you carve your own path to walk upon, you join a grand tradition of bold explorers. The doubters will be lost to time; the truly original will resound throughout the ages. Persist and persevere so that your name will find its place among history's legends!