I’ve started to think of life as constant cycles; there are so many phases, but there are often themes and trends that happen over and over again. Failure is one of those themes. On the bright side, this provides us with so many opportunities to learn from our mistakes, grow, and make better choices. As a senior in college, I feel like I am a senior in high school again–facing failure, uncertainty, and fear.
I am proud to say that I am a different person now; I am not letting my fear of failure impact my mental health or my courage to put myself out there. I have applied for countless competitive scholarships, with a rejection from every one so far. I have failed, but more importantly, I have tried. I have put in the work, expressed myself, and learned more about who I am than I ever would have expected.
Every essay, every terrifying interview…they have all taught me lessons. I learned to tell my story and share my purpose. Telling your story is one of the most important skills I will ever learn. Creating a coherent narrative of who I am, why I am, and where I want to go has empowered me to believe in my personal mission and has given me a sense of direction in a sea of endless choices.
While every rejection still stings with a knot in my stomach, a sigh, and watery eyes, I have reached a point when these effects are secondary to confidence and joy I’ve developed through the process. I am so glad that I have learned this lesson so early and know that every time I make myself vulnerable, I also open up to possibility for new opportunities and experiences.
If you’re curious about vulnerability, I highly recommend you check out Brené Brown’s Ted Talk, “The Power of Vulnerability”: