As the new school year begins, it is important to remember that as students we are NOT defined by our past successes and failures.
Whether we are just starting out in our first year of middle school, or we are completing our last year of law school, every day is a new beginning. Ultimately, our past failures do not define our future successes.
Recently, I was supervising a child doing his homework. He was on his iPad practicing his vocabulary for his humanities class. I was very impressed with his vocabulary comprehension level for his age.
Naturally, I told him that I was impressed. However, instead of feeling good about the compliment I gave him, he immediately put himself down. He told me “I’m only on level 3! There’s a kid in my class on level 9!”
When he said that, I stopped him from continuing with his homework.
You see, when I heard that, I could instantly relate to him.
Until very recently, I didn’t realize that when you compare yourself to others; it takes away from your own personal successes.
In that moment, I was hoping that he would recognize his OWN abilities, and not anyone else’s.
No matter what age we are, we need to recognize that self doubt is the only thing stopping us from succeeding!
Therefore, I think it is especially important as parents, older siblings, and educators that we explain to our youth the importance of NOT comparing yourself to others.
If we take away from our personal successes by comparing ourselves to others, we are only increasing our self doubt.
After all, we have to recognize that no matter what amount of effort we put into something, there is always going to be someone naturally smarter, more athletic, or even more creative than you.
Ultimately, we should define our own expectations and successes.
Forget about the expectations put on you by your friends, classmates, teachers, and even your parents! DO NOT compare yourself to others!
Most importantly, your best effort is all that matters!
I made this sign the other day to remind myself..
Everyday marks ….
A NEW BEGINNING!