How to Choose a Meaningful Tattoo

Tattoos can be a great way to express yourself. You are putting a little glimpse of your personality on your body, normally in a place for the rest of the world to see.

Tattoos are permanent. Do you really want to be an eight-year-old grandpa with a tattoo of a naked lady on his arm or find yourself married to a “Richard” when you have a tattoo over your heart that says “Bobby”?

A lot of people decide to get a tattoo and go on a whim and get one. Some people don’t even know what they want until they get to the tattoo parlor; and then they pick one from the drawings there that possibly a hundred people before them have already gotten.

That is the wrong way to pick out a tattoo. Wrong reasons to get a tattoo in the first place are dares, because someone else you know is getting one or because someone is pressuring you to get one. The only good reason to get a tattoo is because you truly want one.

Once you have decided to get a tattoo, you should spend some time deciding what you want to get. Remember, this is permanent or will cause a lot of money and pain to try to get rid of.

The most personal tattoo you can have is one that you designed for yourself or a close friend designed just for you. Even if you aren’t an artist you can still think of a unique design that you like. Get a clear image of it in your head and sketch it on paper or use a computer program to get the general idea of it down. Then you can take it to a tattoo artist who is skilled in taking people’s ideas and putting them down on paper.

Live with your idea for a period of time. People’s idea of what they like change as quickly as their moods do. When I decided on getting my tattoo, I had known it was the design I wanted for several years. I am not suggesting that anyone else wait years to get a tattoo; just wait long enough to know if it is truly what you want.

If you are having a hard time deciding on what you want your tattoo to look like, consider doodling or looking through an artist’s sketch book. Think about what is important to you, what values you have. Look through books and magazines for pictures that can give you inspiration.

Make the tattoo a reflection of something meaningful to you. Consider your favorite animal, flower, symbol or word and then see how you can personalize it to you.

Avoid trends that are popular now. You want to be able to enjoy your tattoo years down the road.

As you decide what you want your tattoo to look like, also think about where you will put it on your body. This requires thinking seriously about your career goals if you won’t be able to cover or disguise your tattoo easily. Many companies have strict rules about their employees having a visible tattoo.

You will enjoy your tattoo all the more for all the time and planning you put in before getting it.