Thomas Aquinas argued that to lead a good life, it is necessary to focus more on our exemplars than on ourselves. We do by imitating those people as much as we can.
But, other wise men said that we should create our own path because we are a unique creature. There is no way imitating others’ path would perfectly fit ours. Logically, we live in different places with different people and different problems. Why should we imitate others?
We must believe that our path is unique, and our story is also unique. This is merely a fact because each of our gene and life situation is indeed unique.
But to act and to live well in the now, we should follow and learn from what has been successfully done in the past. This can be done by imitating exemplars. The phrase “what would Jesus do” will pause you before taking action, and offers you with options, then? You would mimic what you think your hero would do. Because that’s what you believe to be good. And doing what’s good for yourself is the foundation for a good life.
And those good acts you do by imitating your hero will become part of your unique life, and you will grow apart from you hero and found your path.
So, decide for yourself what you want, try to achieve it by imitating your hero. Fail, try again, fail again, try something else, fail again, try again. And you just created your own path.