I wrote this op-ed piece for one of my classes but I thought I’d share it with you all. It is a reminder that we are in full control of actions and we can guide our lives in whichever we choose. Don’t let set backs determine your future. Happy Wednesday !
” There are times when one stops amidst the rush of everyday life to observe the moments passing by; as if you sat still in the middle of rush hour. Those are the moments of reflection when one realizes the significance of their life, where they were, who they are and what they want to become.Lately our society has set the high standards for success. Getting into the best colleges, achieving the highest GPAs, being added to the Dean’s List, landing an exclusive internship are all factors of a“successful” life in the mind of college students.The pressure to be better and the constant competition are what makes this journey more stressful than it should be.According to Dictionary.com success is the “favorable or prosperous termination of attempts orendeavors; the accomplishment of one’s goals”, but what does that even mean in a short spectrum of life?Maybe it is the idea that titles and recognition promote forlorn immortality. The misconceived perception that such titles allude a mystical power that can help one land a competitive job, establish credibility or obtain wealth. In reality, those who endeavor without a special interest in mind, but theyearning of their hearts, are the ones to find success.Steve Jobs is a great example of this. He had the ambition and his heart on the right place. He had avision to create, innovate and establish something for himself. He was smart enough and courageous enough to break through the chains of a collegian mentality to start something out his garage that today is one of the top, most honorable companies in the world: Apple.Jobs is not the only one to go against the norms of society. Malcolm Gladwell has written various booksthat reform the idea of success. He is, as a matter-of- fact, the epitome of the “underdog”, someone who did not look for the Ivy Leagues, Dean’s Lists or renowned titles to define his success.In his many books, Gladwell explains that success is not just perseverance and ambition but an array of uncontrollable circumstances that leads to greatness.Likewise, life’s trajectory is based on choices and circumstances. One day you may be turned away from your dream school, or go through financial hardships, you may not have the title of “best scholar” added to your resume, but with every conventional “step back” comes a valuable lesson: “ Where you go is not who you will be”.
Titles and trophies apart, you are the one who defines success.”– Andrea Linhares, 2015