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How To Write A Personal Essay

It takes more than mastery of language to tell about oneself expressively. The understanding that informs a personal essay is not only deep but also demanding.

However scared we think about presenting a paper that will speak to the hearts of the reader, all we have to appreciate is that we can pull it through when we understand the easy and simple steps.

Think about how unique you are and how you want to bring to light the things that are unknown to others about you. The logical way to do so will be to organize your thoughts by applying all the writing skills at your disposal to drive this particular message home.

How To Write A Personal Essay

So what is a personal essay? This is a type of writing that is broad, and it incorporates various writing styles. Mostly, in assignments such as this, students are asked to create an essay that addresses talented people or time or events of their lives.

In other words, the goal of a personal essay is to tell about the events or situations in ways that the target audience or readers get to fully share the writer’s experience in addition to understanding him or her.

Before we begin personal essay writing, it is only logical that we evaluate the environment and the target audience bearing in mind that they are unknown to us besides the fact that we also don’t know them.

Having an idea about them or simply analyzing them will help us establish their expectations and write a personal essay that connects to their feelings in addition to the article being of value to us by earning us a place in the university or college for example.


How To Write A Personal Essay

So what goes into a personal essay? This is the big question that we have to address to claim that indeed we have a great personal essay otherwise without understanding the content of the paper then we are not going to write one. Simply, personal essay as the name suggests are personal, and they contain personal information. The information, therefore, has to be as enjoyable as possible but centered on one’s unique abilities.

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When we are writing a personal essay for application purposes, it is essential to tell about ourselves, but at the same time, we should be able to convince the reader that we are the best for the position.

It is essential to realize that reasons for writing this type of paper varies greatly and it could be for college purposes or for seeking a position in an organization but whatever the case, the content has to be as persuasive as possible.

If you are writing it as an assignment, your aim as a student is to get good grades out of it and for that reason the essay must convince your professor to the point of reading it in its entirety.

While we appreciate that generally, writing is an intimidating task that consumes time and demands absolute attention, personal essays writing, as we will realize does not present difficult challenges but only requires deep thinking and compliance to the well-known procedures.

Just like other essays, the golden rule is to start by conceptualization, whereby the writer must think about the document long before engaging in the actual writing. This means that you must be able to come up with a topic, think on it, and then begin by creating the first drafts.

Note that the terms ‘drafts’ has been intentionally used to prepare the writer because he or she will have to write and rewrite before he or she settles on the final paper to present.

Sources For Generating The Topics For Personal Essay Writing

Some of the common sources that we can use to come up with a topic or topical areas for our essay may include libraries, reading books, having a look at other personal essay examples and through brainstorming. The topic should, therefore, be informed by the personal interest in it, the attention of the evaluation committee, our personal motivations, our discovery of the opportunity, why we think we are the best candidate for the opportunity and sources of our inspiration.

In summary, the writer should show that he or she is very distinct and better than the rest of the park.

Areas or Topics for personal essay writing:

  • Individual success stories
  • Challenges in life
  • Our journey to education or our struggles to achieve education
  • How we spend our free time
  • Our love life
  • What we rea currently doing and how those activities are contributing to the bigger idea of joining a college or a university
  • Special skills and traits that we think we have
  • The writing experience and how it has changed one’s life
  • The best college you wish to join and why you want to do so
  • Some of the things you intend to do in the future
  • Balancing between charity work you are involved in and school
  • What a great musician you are
  • Respect
  • Culture
  • Competition
  • Rivalry

The listed topical areas among others are essential when we are thinking about the topic, and we must agree that personal issues vary greatly and the above topics may not necessarily cover some issues we want to discuss.

However, choosing a topic should not be a problem because we have at some point in our lives participated in some activities or we may be having some special skills that we want to turn into a topic.

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Basic Considerations for Writing A Personal Essay

To begin with, when we are writing a personal essay, it is vital that we first create an outline for our essay which must be organized in three sections.

Part One Of The Personal Essay Outline: The Introduction

The outline for our essay must have a compelling introduction that has captivating statements with words that get the attention of our potential readers. To have a good introduction, we need to consider using the following listed examples:

  • Jokes
  • Metaphors
  • Similes
  • Statistics
  • Quotes
  • Anecdotes
  • Literary terms
  • Facts

Starting our introduction with the above-mentioned ideas will warrant our personal essay readership. Providing an article that is plain and lacking an extra hook will make the essay as boring, just like other personal essay examples we have not liked.

For our piece to be as captivating as possible, the first line should be short, concise, and entertaining. When we decide to provide statistics, it is essential to provide factual figures and not imaginary numbers because in as much as the article is personal, the readers are knowledgeable enough and they will question your source. It is recommended that you avoid figures as much as possible for this type of essay.

Part Two Of The Personal Essay Outline: The Body

Here we provide in-depth information that describes the points we are putting forth. Our goal in this part is to explain some points and lend support to a thesis stamen as much as possible. We must tie the point we are describing in the body to the topic and make our readers see the logic behind the topic we are discussing.

Because we are writing a personal essay outline, the points should be outlined in bullet format. Avoid outstretching the points at this level because what is needed is just a guideline that will be used later. The body should also be the place whereby we demonstrate that indeed, we are skillful and ready for the opportunity.

Part Three Of The Personal Essay: The Conclusion

Every piece of writing must come to an end. Without endings, people would not want event attempt to read any paper. Imagine a full book of 100,000 pages, sounds like an exaggeration right? The point is you will likely turn the last page to understand what the content is all about. That means the summary is critical in any piece of writing.

The purpose of a conclusion for personal essay writing is all about summarizing the significant points and then presenting them to the reader. It is important to note that your reader may be very busy to the point of not reading the entire document and may opt to look at the conclusion.

Use the acceptable writing styles as per the university or college you are applying for when creating the outline that: among the standard styles that many learning institutions employ include: Harvard, APA, MLA and Chicago, among others.

The Actual Writing Of An Essay About Oneself

The writing process takes the shape of the outline, but as compared to the framework, the writing is in-depth, and it essentially explains into details the traits of the writer. Writing about oneself is an art that requires a lot of creativity, and for this reason; the writer must first come up with a draft document.

It is essential to put down the idea in a paper with fewer regards to the organization, or the flow. As we write, we need to bear in mind that good article result from several attempts and several drafts. The draft should borrow a leaf from the outline. If the outline was perfect, then the entire structure of the first draft should take that shape.

Ideally, the final essay should have an introduction, a body and a conclusion.

The Introduction Of A Personal Essay

Give an introduction with regards to the topic chosen, but you must also remember to bring the reader on board by using great sentences meant to capture their attention. Avoid being wordy but instead; focus on the point by being as simple as possible. The introduction should paint the picture of who you are and why you need the opportunity or the job.

Just like the conclusion, this section should be enough to say something unique about oneself so that where the reader opts not to read other parts of the essay, they would have gotten all they need to know about the writer from the introduction.

The Body Of A Personal Essay

We have stated some particular thing about us, and it is now the time to explain them in details to the readers. This is the work of the body paragraphs. For personal essay’s the paragraphs for the body are three, and they contain separate ideas that support the points raised in the introduction, including the thesis statement if used. The body should not veer off the theme or the overall goal of the essay.

The Conclusion Of A Personal Essay

This is an essential part of any writing and in the case of a personal essay; the conclusion should be one paragraph containing summarized information about the whole document. In other words, the summary should factor all the sections from the introduction.

The end cannot be a paragraph containing separate information; this means that the writer must connect all the paragraphs. Make it as brief and as sweet as possible and remind the readers why the information you have provided in the essay is important.

  • Start early enough
  • Show confidence in your
  • article
  • Show the skills you have
  • Revise your document to ensure that it is aligned to the one provided
  • Use personal essay outlines to guide you
  • Consult the professor

Things to avoid in writing Personal Essays

  • Using derogatory language
  • Projecting oneself as the most intelligent
  • Using different sources and failing to cite them


Personal essay examples are out there for us to refer to when creating our own, but, it is essential to remember that you will need more than those examples. The process of personal essay writing is well outlined in this article; you will realize that all that you need as a writer is to follow proper procedures to write the essay.

All that it takes to create a personal essay include a topic, an outline, writing a draft, and finally the final copy. Just as the subject of this article suggests, the tips and guides within this article will help you understand how great personal essays are written.

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