If anybody has entered the IA with the most doubts, it would be me. I am what you describe as a learner who prefers tests over projects. Most of the times, I disliked giving other people feedback, I felt it was a waste of their time and mine and that they’re better off getting feedback from a teacher. I believed in grades and following a concrete rubric. You might be asking yourself, why did she join the IA? Up until two months ago I would have answered, “I still have no idea”.
Now I answer with the clearest explanation: I joined the IA because I prefer test, dislike giving others feedback and believe in just grades. You see, I needed the IA in order to change these things I had locked in my brain, so I unconsciously joined the program to change my perspective on learning. I would have never thought about it in this way until recently.
As being an editor for the magazine, it was my duty to give feedback to others, but at times I’d find myself really taking my free time to work on somebody else’s article. At these times I was being what you would call a giver, and it felt good. I’ve never experienced the feeling of helping somebody reach their success, but it gives me pride in my work and others. Before the IA, it was about me, me and me. What can I do to outshine the rest? Being part of this magazine has shown me what true collaboration really feels like. It’s not easy or simple, it quite the opposite. You get frustrated and at times you just don’t want to do it, but everything changes when you all have one goal. The goal to create a perfect product that will be worth all the work. That goal kept us together, that goal reminded me why I was staying after school helping someone out or pulling 3 hour Skype calls, giving my peers feedback.
I would have never thought I could grow so much as a learner AND a person, and I’m proud to say I would not have gotten that in the other program. There’s something challenging and fascinating about working on the same article for three months. My article would not have been the same after the first prototype and I think every single person in my class would say the same. We strived for perfection and I truly believe we reached it.
I can now stand in a large crowd and have more confidence when I speak. I can write up a blog post in 30 minutes whereas last semester it would have taken me more than an hour. I can give pages of feedback and enjoy every minute of it. I’m surprised by how much my brain has grown this year and I can’t believe I’m just figuring this out now. Although I will not be joining the IA next year, the skills I learned and the person I’ve become will stay with me forever.
On November 13, 1987, a 17 year old boy that was studying at American University in Washington, DC, decided to go out to a bar with his friends on this Thursday night. From a distance, he spotted a beautiful girl. Of course, he was too shy to ask her to dance, so he just admired her from a distance. A few moments later, a pack of trouble-looking boys walked into the bar. Without paying much attention to them, the boy just continued talking with his friends. When he turned his head to take another glance at the girl, he noticed one of the guys from the pack was talking to the girl, though she looked very uncomfortable.
“Don’t you want to dance with me, c’mon, c’mon dance with me.”, he said, pushing his body towards her.
- “I don’t want to! Leave me alone.”, the girl replied.
After a few minutes, even though his conscious told him not to, the boy looking at this from a distance, stepped in.
- “Hey! Leave her alone. She already told you she doesn’t want to dance with you.”, the boy told him.
- “Ok..”, the other boy replied.
He seemed very calm for someone that had just called him out. While the concerned boy asked if the girl was okay, the other boy called his pack of guys to leave. As they we’re all making their way out of the bar, the same boy from before, picked up a piece of broken glass and screamed to the boy talking to the girl, “Hey!”, threw the piece of glass at his face and ran out of the place.
The poor boy laid unconsciously on the ground, with a thick piece of glass in his right eye, and blood running down his face. He was left in pure darkness. Quickly, he was rushed to the hospital, but not fast enough. After surgery the doctor told him he had lost complete vision in his right eye, forever.
It was hard for this boy to get used to seeing through only one eye the first couple of years. It was especially hard to deal with the fact the boy that did this to him got away, with no punishment. Driving was harder, not being able to see his full surroundings, it was all very difficult. It was a huge emotional challenge as well because he would have to accept the fact that he will no longer see through his right eye for the rest of his life.
This boy is now turning 47 years old in a week and I’m proud to call him my father. He currently uses a prosthetic eye, but only for looks. He is completely blind in his right eye but has no shame. He has learned to live with it. There have been plenty of bumps on the road along the way, but he never lost hope.
We never know what could happen to us today, tomorrow or ever. We could be in a car crash tomorrow and die instantly, or a family member could get into an accident. We don’t know and it’s simply out of our control. However, we do have certain things in our control. My father would have never thought that at the age of 17 he would be go blind in an eye forever, but it did. It happened and he learned to have the right attitude about it, no matter how difficult it was after the incident.
I believe these kind of situations happen in life so we are reminded of the many things we are lucky to have, even if they are something as common as our eyes.
Do you ever find yourself wishing for a specific talent? Being able to cook, being good at a sport, playing an instrument, etc. Well, welcome to the story of my life.
As a little girl I’ve always dreamed about playing the piano, everything about it fascinated me: its delicate keys, the relaxing sound it adds to an environment, the peaceful melodies it can create. Two years ago, I decided to finally take lessons. Extremely nervous to meet my teacher for the first time, a stubby old man walked into my house with a very determined expression on his face. He’s a very traditional man who does not like wasting time and believes in the power of practice, practice, and more practice. I am a very dedicated person to learning piano, but there’s only so much dedication I can give with homework, soccer practice, projects, and other activities I have going on in my life at the same time.
The worst moment I frequently experience in my life is waiting for my teacher to arrive for our lesson and knowing I have not practiced anything and I’m still at the same level as the previous class. The disappointment in his voice kills me when he asks me, “you haven’t practice, right?”. I tell him I’ve been busy, which I know is true but I can’t help but feel like a failure.
I truly believe people are born with talents and, with practice, they improve that talent along the way, but I honestly feel I was not born with this talent and I’m pushing something that’s not there. I tell this to my mother and she tells me that’s ridiculous. I try telling my teacher I don’t think I’m good enough and he responds the same as my mother, but even though this sounds terrible, what if he’s just saying that because I’m paying him? So if my mother is forced to tell me not to worry because she’s my mother, and my teacher could be lying to me for his own personal benefit, how do I know if I should just quit and stop wasting my time? I’ve considered it so many times... but then I stop.
I stop and forget about all the bullshit. I’m serious. I forget about being good and wanting to please others and I ask myself, what do I love? And deep down, I know I love piano. You see, the moment I am prepared for that lesson and do have time to practice, time stops. I have complete presence of mind and allow myself to only focus on my fingers touching the keys and the music coming from them. Beethoven, Mozart, Bach, the opportunities I have to improve my skills using their compositions excite me. I’m not ready to give something up that makes me feel alive, even when I do struggle at times.
Maybe right now is not the best time to explore and challenge myself with constant practice and dedication, due to all the other stuff going on in my life, but that doesn’t mean I have to quit completely because it’s a passion of mine I can’t let go of. Maybe I’ll never be really good at playing, which after a long time of accepting it, it’s finally okay with me. After worrying a lot, I’m fine with keeping this passion of mine to myself, and hey, maybe in the long run I’ll be confident enough to play in front of others, but for now I’m satisfied with me, myself, and my piano, whether it’s a talent or just a passion.
4 months. 11 weeks. 133 days.
Ever since I was born, being the second child, I’ve never been alone. I’ve always had my older sister, Nina, around for anything I needed. From not knowing what to wear to just hanging out and talking, she’s always there. Our memories go on and on and really never stop.
When I was born on March 27, 2000, my older sister was 1 year and 9 months old, and the most jealous one-year-old you would have seen in your life. While I would be sleeping in my crib at night, Nina would try to unlatch the bars and literally try to kill me. But with the jealousy (and time!) there soon came love. As we got older, we were inseparable. We would blow off our friends because we would already have plans together. As though we hold different personalities, Nina being more outgoing and me more reserved, nothing stopped us from being the perfect duo. I, of course, would follow everything Nina would do. If she had a plan to sneak away our house, I would be the person following her with the packed backpacks and the snacks. If she told me to stop, drop and roll, I would do it, no questions asked. She was the boss, and I loved it. I loved to copy her and learn from her, which made me the person I am today. She’s taught me how to have fun and let loose, and to not care about what people think of me no matter what. Most importantly she taught me the best thing about having a sister, knowing you’ll always have a friend.
She’s my other half even though we’re so different. She's my constant partner even though there’s sometimes competition between us. She can really piss me off sometimes but she's my best friend. It’s not simple being her sister but my life without her is unimaginable. Whenever something good happens to me she’s the first person I would want to tell and if something bad happens, she’s the first person I’d let it all out to. She’s what I like to call, my person.
In 4 months, 11 weeks and 133 days I’m going to have to say goodbye to her for a long time because she will be going off to college, attending Penn State University. I knew it was coming, of course, I knew. It just hit me not too long ago. It’s just around the corner and I don’t know how to prepare myself! How do you prepare for saying goodbye to your person?
Honestly, I don’t think I can ever prepare myself for what's to come. I don’t think a proper goodbye exists. All I know is that I am her sister and I will support her whenever. I’ll be here to talk over the phone even though I’m a million miles away. I really do wish her the greatest 4 years at college and to enjoy every moment...it just sucks to not have her here. It’s going to be hard to say goodbye but it’s not a real goodbye because after all, she’s kind of stuck with me forever...:)
Where has peace gone in the world? Have people forgotten what it means to “come in peace”? I wake up in the morning, listening to the news, wondering why the world has become such a terrifying place. We all have different religions, whether it’s being a jew, muslim, catholic, buddhist, etc, but although they all believe in completely different things, shouldn’t we all at least want there to be peace on Earth?
My younger sister, who is currently 12 years old is worried about terrorism. She is scared to travel to other countries because of terror attacks, because of what she watches on the news. Her day-to-day conversation with her friends mostly includes national political talk about what would happen if the communist running for president were to win. She asked my dad the other night if we would move to another country.
My question here is, why is a 12-year old worried about politics and terrorism? Shouldn’t she be playing games with her friends and focusing on her school work? It isn’t normal to be worried about dangerous situations at such a young age. But at the same time, in the world we live in, there seems to be a need to worry.
32 people were killed in the recent Brussels attack, along with more than 300 injured people; until now, more than 11 million people have been killed or forced to flee their homes in Syria, which leads them with hunger emergencies as the displaced find themselves without the means to feed themselves.
As Peruvians, we feel safe, which is why it takes compassion to truly feel for these people. It’s so easy to watch these headlines on the news and turn the tv off, it’s harder though, to put yourself in their shoes and feel for them. We might feel useless but that does not give us the right to not feel sorry for them and imagine what these families are going through.
This is why I question today’s society. I am not an expert on everything happening with ISIS or other terrorist groups, but I do know it bothers me that they struggle to have compassion for others and completely deny any peace between their own country. We are all here for such little time, why kill innocent people? I wonder because it is becoming harder and harder to explain such violence to the younger generation. All we can do is hope it ends soon so our world can be reminded again what it feels to live in peace between one another.
The famous ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has gone viral this past year. Friends got together to have a good laugh while pouring a bucket of ice cold water onto their friend and then posting the video on Facebook. It seems like a fun thing to do, right? But unfortunately, there’s a major problem here. If you ask each person the purpose or meaning behind this activity, the majority will simply respond, “its about ALS”, and sadly, a lot of people will not have an answer to your question.
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. So, I guess a good way of answering the question above would be with this response: the ALS ice bucket challenge is an annual event to raise awareness and funds to find treatments and a cure for the disease. And why the ice you might ask? Well, if you have this disease, it slowly takes over your body’s muscles and bones, causing symptoms like not being able to talk, walk, eat, etc. When throwing a large bucket of ice over yourself, your hands or body might feel numb for one second. For one second you MIGHT just feel the same as a person with ALS. A person that slowly isn’t able to communicate with their family, or eat on their own.
An old friend of my parents used to babysit my sisters and I during summer when we were at the beach. She was always so loving around us and pampered us with gifts all the time. I remember waking up one morning, and with it not even being Christmas, she had gifts laid all over the floor for us. There was no doubt it was a dream to have her around.
Just recently she was diagnosed with ALS at the age of 72. Her world was soon about to change in ways she couldn't imagine. The doctors said she had as little as 6 months to live. How do you take in that information? My parents and her family were extremely devastated and still are, considering this happened only a few weeks ago. Already she is beginning to lose her speech. When I see her, I don’t know what to say.
Millions of people are diagnosed with this disease every day, which is why it is great they created this Ice Bucket Challenge, but I think it’s all of our jobs to let people know the reason behind it and to inform people about this disease. It is hard to acknowledge such a life-changing disease with just a simple act but if you’re going to do it, do it right. The world we live in is filled with sad experiences people have to suffer through, it is what we do for others that matters.
I sit down not knowing what to say to my parents’ dear friend so I did the only thing I could do. Return the favor and buy her some presents.
The Spanish empire in the 16th century was unbelievably rich. But how did this come to be? Well, it’s all thanks to the king of illegal mining. Potosí is located in the southern western part of Bolivia and is also the country's capital. Here, lies Cerro Rico, a mountain that contains infinite amount of silver and to this day is still legendary. Being 4,000 meters above sea level, Potosí is considered one of the highest cities in the world. Starting from the 16th century, it exported about 40,000 tons of silver, which made the Spanish empire the richest anybody had ever seen. In the beginning of the 1600’s, investigations were taken to charge because of the mining conditions. The Bolivian government had noticed how poisonous it was to the human body to be working in the mines, yet they didn’t take much action to addressing this issue. To this day, men continue to work in these deadly conditions of informal mining, risking their lives to support their families. As a miner, getting through each day alive is a miracle. Their beliefs, family and culture are all they have, however even holding onto these values will not erase the ugly truth of working under Cerro Rico.
We must first understand the consequences of illegal mining. The impact on wildlife is definitely something that must be taken into consideration. The metal mines have to be created by digging under ground, creating tunnels; as this was applied to all of Cerro Rico, many animals have been deprived of their habitat or simply killed. And of course, health problems and child labour. The majority of miners become infected with silicosis disease, meaning they probably only have 45 years to live after working for more than a few weeks in the mines. Unfortunately, in a town like Potosí, children as young as 10 years old begin working in the mines. All they wish is to be able to study hard to get a real job, out of the mines. In a heartbreaking documentary based on illegal mining in Potosí, Basilio Vargas’ story was told. As a 14 year old boy that started working in Cerro Rico’s mines at the age of 10, his father passed away when he was young, leaving him no choice but to support his mother and younger siblings. In the The Devil’s Miner, we hear about his painful work and how he dreams about growing old and having any job that doesn’t involve the mines.
So, how do all these miners get through this nightmare everyday. Chewing on coca leaves releases some pressure from the altitude, reduces fatigue and decreases their appetite. Some may consume alcohol daily, to push through a hard day in the mines. In my opinion, I would support the view that there is not enough attention being given to Cerro Rico. To begin with, children should not be allowed to work in the mines, whether they are 10 or 15. Silicosis and other diseases resulting from mining have become very serious and must be addressed immediately. Thankfully, there are people that have are trying to save el Cerro Rico. Just like its name says for itself, this hill is way too rich to just let it self destruct. The government is taking action and has proposed a 2.4 million filled project that will restore its crumbling peak and strengthen its sinkholes that sustain its flanks. However, since 2005 this project has been failing and succeeding. In regards to its people and the industry, I suggest to make this informal mine, legal so that kids don’t have to risk their lives and so that men don’t feel obligated to go to extreme measures to find metal because this way there will be less casualties and health issues. I hope Cerro Rico can can find its way back to its former shape, keeping its title as the legendary home of the mines.
Sean Covey’s way of explaining the 7th habit of highly effective teens could not have been a better way of ending this book. The concept consists of renewing yourself, which if I learned anything from this book, it is anything you want to change or improve in your life begins with YOU. YOU must know what you want and what’s better for you. YOU must take action.
Covey uses a metaphor throughout the whole chapter which describes us trying to cut down a tree with an unsharpened saw. If we would just sharpen the saw, we’d finish must faster. Sean Covey uses A LOT of metaphors throughout this book but this one caught my attention because without reading much, I already felt like it connected to me. During the school year I’m always busy with homework, projects, after school activities and balancing a social life at the same time I never truly stopped to sharpen my saw. In my head I would tell myself, “keep going, you’re almost there. Keep working hard because good grades equal a good college, don’t lose focus.” I recently realized I needed to stop and reflect about everything but, how? If I stop to change my way of being, where do I start? This is where I must thank Sean Covey, because he introduced me to the four key dimensions that I need to turn my attention to: my body, my brain, my heart and my soul.
My body represents the physical dimension. This is where I wiped the sweat off my forehead and said, “phew”! This whole key dimension is about eating healthy and exercising, which I practice regularly. Of course, I’m not perfect. I like pigging out occasionally with my friends but as the author put it himself, this is okay. But listen, this doesn’t mean I am completely happy with my body image but as the book saids, “It’s all about how you feel, not how you look.” And I agree with this completely. I feel as though my day is not complete if I don’t exercise which is a good habit my body has grown to have. I don’t make a big deal out of exercising. After trying out a lot of new things, I know what I enjoy doing, so I don’t have to dread anything when I decide to go workout, I actually look forward to it. I play soccer and go the gym and also love going to some occasional yoga classes. If you find what you like you won’t have to think of pain each time you hear the word “exercise".
My brain represents the mental dimension. This part of the book gave me a clear idea of what is truly important in life, which is getting a good education or having an educated mind. There are so many ways we can stimulate our minds, such as playing challenging games, watching documentaries or learning how to play a musical instrument. But what caught me off guard was that the simplest, most straight forward approach to expand your mind is to read. I was completely aware that this was a fact but it opened my eyes up to my own reading habits lately because in the last year I’ve only been reading books that I had to read for a class. You see, about two years ago I used to finish a book everything month so after reading this part in the book I’ve decided to make it my new goal to read at least one book every two months. And as for educating my mind, I made another goal to read the top stories on the news everyday to be more aware of what’s happening in the world today (I’ve already downloaded the CNN app on my phone!).
My heart represents the emotional dimension. “Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.” (Mother Teresa) This key dimension opened my eyes to the relationships in my life and how I am in control of how I want them to be. As the quote explains above, once you have a relationship with someone else, you are now in charge of listening to that person when he/she needs to talk to you, provide laughter when he/she is sad, or just be present when he/she is not feeling themselves. By doing this, when the situation is vice versa, you will also have that person by your side and most importantly, when you put a smile on someone else’s face or give service to someone else, you will feel happier inside. My relationship with a good friend of mine is stronger than ever because we listen to each other and give each other advice whenever one of us needs it. We find time to put things aside to talk to each other which is a huge relief when things aren’t going as smoothly as I hoped they would. It’s those small acts of kindness that I read about at the beginning of the book that fill your heart with warm, positive energy.
My soul is the spiritual dimension. This key dimension begins with a few questions, “What moves your soul?”, “What deeply inspires you?”. As a human, we need to feed our souls. By this I mean we need to take time out of our busy schedules and do something our mind and bodies not only enjoy doing but often times are very necessary. Things like meditating, writing in a journal, praying or helping others. My way of escaping is playing piano. When my fingers touch the keys my mind immediately goes elsewhere, somewhere it is not allowed to think about anything else aside from the music coming form the instrument. I crave this feeling so badly when I become too stressed or sad. It is important to find something that inspires you and fills the empty space you feel inside. Nature often helps as well. Try waking up early and seeing the sunrise or finding a quiet place to watch the sunset. This will allow you to appreciate where you are and will literally fill your soul, leaving you feeling more complete than ever.
The ending of this book could not have been more perfect. I’d like to thank Sean Covey for giving me hope and direction. Hope that will allow me to want to change the way I speak or listen to my parents. Hope that will allow me to let go of bad habits. Hope that will deposit 1,000,000’s of dollars into my personal and relationship bank accounts. And finally, direction for guiding me through the step by step instructions and tips on how I will get there.
“We have met the enemy and he is us”. Naturally when you read the title of Sean Covey’s book, the 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens, you are prepared to read an informational book about the society in which teens live in and how they act or react to certain situations, but surprisingly this is not the case. As you read the book, not only will you be immediately attached due to the graphics, quotes and its entertaining voice but you will learn that all these “problems” in teens lead back to the teen itself. In other words, although it talks about ALL TEENS IN THE 21ST CENTURY, it teaches you more than you ever knew about yourself. Read the quote I stated at the beginning of this paragraph. The enemy is within us. You might be asking yourself what Sean Covey is trying to say here and the answer to that is the following:
Personal Bank Account. This is a concept that was introduced at the beginning of the book that instantly catched my attention. Just like having a bank account where you keep your money and savings, you are able to make deposits and withdraws in your personal bank account. For example, if you have done a good deed today such as helping another person, you feel good inside - this is a deposit. On the other hand, if you have lied to your parents and feel terrible about it, you have made a withdraw. While reading this I began to reflect on my own personal bank account. Am I loaded or am I bankrupt? Am I satisfied with the person I am or am I getting farther and farther away from the person I want to become?
Well, let’s see. I believe I do not worry much about what people think of me, which gives me control over myself and the things I do. Cha-ching! I trust myself to make good decisions like when I try not getting frustrated when discussing things with my parents or when I go with my gut in stressful situations. Cha-ching! I feel very goal driven because I am able to priortize when it comes to balancing my social life and school work. Cha-ching! Now, it feels like I’m getting awfully rich here so whether I like it or not, I must face my withdraws. I often times wrestle with my feelings of worthlessness and inferiority, like when I finish a project or assignment, I lack confidence in my work. I get very arrogant and stubborn to help hide my insecurities, for example, when I am in a group project, I tend to take control which is not always the best because if I get lazy I will convince myself and others that what I am doing is correct when there is actually space to check for other possibilities.
Wow! This is the most self-reflection I have done in months, and it is all thanks to Sean Covey and his brilliant concept. In life, you are the one in the driver’s seat, no one else. As Covey states it, “All change begins with Y-O-U.” So you might be wondering how to keep a healthy PBA, and trust me, I asked myself the same thing when reading the book, which is why this smart author has left us six tips on how to make small and simple deposits in our every day lives that will lead us to being EXTREMELY rich!
To begin with, you must keep promises to yourself. In order to feel in control of your life, you must treat the commitments you make to yourself as seriously as those you make to the important people in your life. For example, ever since my mom gives me money for my weekends, I make a promise to myself to only waste half of it so that I can tell her I have leftover money, which shows I am responsible, and also to have more money for next weekend, so it’s a win-win situation! And remember: once you break those personal promises, you are making a PBA withdraw!!
Next, you should try making random acts of kindness. This is one of the most important tips because although these acts of kindness are small, the deposits they will make in your PBA will be big. When helping others, it helps you to focus outward, not inward, however you will feel so good inside knowing you’ve helped someone else. And I’m talking about something as little as holding the door for someone with a lot of things in their hands, or staying after school to give a friend feedback on their work, which is something I’ve done before and I’ve felt really good about it. And remember: keeping to yourself will only cause your PBA to withdraw!!
Up next, magnify your talents. This will not only give you an extreme self-esteem boost but will help you make discoveries about yourself that you never knew about! And your talent doesn’t have to be something concrete like playing an instrument or sport, it can be something you are intellectually good at like Science or even having good listening skills. Don’t bury your talents because they can serve for not only yourself but other people as well!
Another tip that will definitely deposit greatly into your PBA account is being gentle with yourself. This means accepting that you are not perfect and allowing yourself to make mistakes, and learning from those mistakes. It means forgiving yourself when you mess up. And remember: beating yourself up about something will only make the situation worse and is considered a withdraw from your PBA!!
In addition, renewing yourself is also very important. Finding a place where you can escape to where you can relax and think can help a lot. Exercising is another way that helps teens cope with any stress. My personal escape is playing piano. When I play, I can think clearly but at the same time block the thoughts I don’t want to think about in the moment, it is truly my lifesaver! Find your own way to renew yourself to help you find that moment of peace.
Finally, be honest. There is self-honesty, which means when someone looks at you do they see the real you? Are you being fake and trying to be someone you’re not? Judy Garland once said, “Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.” Then, there’s honesty in our actions. If you have been dishonest and have lied to someone else like a friend or parent, the person you are most hurting is yourself because after all, you know when you are not telling the truth and that is something you must deal with all by yourself. Remember: honest is the best policy and lying will only make withdraws from your PBA!!
So, I definitely feel like I got a lot out of the first two parts of Sean Covey’s book because not only has it taught me about teens nowadays, but most importantly, it has taught me about myself. It has made me reflect more on the person I want to be and what I love most about this is that I am starting to get an idea of how I will get there, starting with the six tips mentioned above, which I plan on practicing more and more, everyday. And who knows? Maybe I’ll get to where I want to be. But for now, I am very excited to finish the book and learn the final four habits of highly effective teens.
Do NOT let others define you. It seems dramatic and you may not even think this relates to you but you’re wrong. Everybody gets fooled by this, even when they don’t know it. Humans have a natural ability to know what makes them happy. Even if us young adults do not know what we want to do in the future, we know certain things we enjoy doing. So let me ask you this… who has the right to tell you differently?
At the age of 18 my dad got into a bar fight and lost vision in his right eye. He was defending a girl that was being disrespected by a group of guys. He stood up for her and the guys said “okay, sorry”. Moments later, they turned around, and so did my dad, but what my dad didn’t know was that one of them was holding a piece of glass in his hand. When they called my dad’s attention, they through the glass in his eye, leaving him on the floor in pain, with no help.
When my dad was told he was completely blind in his right eye, he was furious and in shock. When he walks in a room, he would not be able to see half of it, when he drives he would have no vision of the passenger seat or the person sitting in it. But this frustration did not make my dad throw his hands up in the air and give up. Not even for a second. He accepted it. How many people do you think looked at my dad and said he wouldn’t be able to drive? My dad was not going to let people look at him with pitiful eyes because he didn’t want that. He wanted to prove people wrong. He was not going to let people define him as weak or worthless. He had dreams when he was 18 and he wasn’t going to let anything, not even something like this, take those dreams away. So he went off to college in Washington, met my mom, fell in love and continued learning and following a career he truly enjoys (with plenty of driving!!).
None of this would have been possible if he threw his arms up in the air and said he wasn’t going. He could have easily taken some time off, started college later on and stayed in Lima but then he wouldn’t be as happy as he is now. I know it, my family knows it and he knows it.
So let me ask you again…who has the right to define you other than yourself? Follow the dreams you want and don’t let others tell you you can’t, because nothing will compare to the moment you prove them wrong. Don’t live in fear of disappointing others because the only person you will end up disappointing if you don’t follow what you believe in is yourself. Let yourself be the person who defines who you truly are, and once you’ve done that, follow your heart to what will bring YOU happiness.