Evaluate a significant experience, achievement, risk you have taken, or ethical dilemma you have faced and its impact on you. (500 word limit)
The first time I rode a bike, I immediately fell down. The first time I kicked a ball, I miserably missed. When I was a kid, taking risks was something that would guarantee consistent results- failure. As I grew and matured, taking risks became the first step in learning. But for fifteen years, I dared not to venture outside the small perimeter of my comfort zone; I embraced the shelter of my own apprehension. One of my most alarming weaknesses was a lack of confidence. However, I did not remain resigned to the fate that I would never be able to lead, delegate, or speak publicly. I made a change, took a risk, and finally succeeded.
In my freshmen year of high school, I idly passed through school as a passive and timid onlooker hoping that courage would come along with the miraculous passage of time. But it didn't. I was adept in playing the role of the wall flower and it was time to face my fear of ridicule. So I took a risk and joined the speech and debate team that consisted of 3 members at that time. With little confidence, I entered my first competition. Never had my nerves been tested to such an extent as I waited to recite my speech; my anxiety only worsened as the moment approached. Finally I stood up, barely able to think, feel, or express as my knees wobbled and voice wavered. What was supposed to be a short paced ten minutes seemed like an eternity in front of judges with bored expressions and empty stares. Unfortunately, I could not recollect my thoughts and speak with a level of confidence that would have utterly amazed everyone that day. Instead, I walked back to my seat regretting my decision in joining the team. But this was not my first and final speech tournament.
I continued to compete throughout high school and with each speech recital, I gained confidence, developed my speaking abilities, and broke out of the shell that hindered me for so long. Later on, I experienced the joy of advancing in my competitions and getting recognized for my abilities. These moments of triumph replaced all the feelings of failure and disappointment. This new found courage led me to have faith in myself and my peers; I assumed the position of president and built my speech and debate team to thirty members. As I reflect on my personal progress, I see that my self-doubt was the only obstacle that deterred me from pursuing my dreams.
I have higher hopes for myself now. Failing is disheartening, but I have learned that disappointment is necessary for individual growth. My confidence and willingness to take a risk transformed my small speech and debate club to a strong team that is now flourishing with life and potential. But this is not a success story. This is a story full of letdowns and mistakes; nevertheless, it is one that fills me with pride and the feeling of accomplishment.
*Word count 502- need to cut. Please leave feedback! Thank you.