This I Believe

Clay - Bismarck, North Dakota
Entered on February 1, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

Clay F

Ms. Miller

AP English 11

14 January 2008

This I Believe

I believe in retaining a happy state of mind regardless of the conditions and if things aren’t going the right way, then do something about it.

Throughout my years in school I realize that I have changed very much, not only physically, but also philosophically and emotionally. The beliefs I have now contrast considerably with ones I have held in the past, for I have observed that having an open mind and the acceptance of new ideas is a healthy habit.

If I had say the event that triggered my optimistic beliefs I would have to say it was my first few pep rallies. All the students that were in sports or clubs would gather in the center of the basketball court while everyone else watched as they took turns parading around the gymnasium. As I looked around me I realized that I was one of the few student who was not in anything at all. This disturbed me greatly, immediately realizing that I was one of those losers. This added on to all the angry and depressing thoughts of politics, which seemed to be all I could think about at the time. At that moment I decided that I was done moping around feeling sorry for myself, I was going to go do something.

That winter I joined basketball. I had not played for many years and upon the first practice realized that I was painfully out of shape. I was placed on the C team, and rightfully so for I was green, slow, and a horrible shot. I was tall however and just athletic enough to ensure I handled the ball a lot and as a result scored far more than anyone on the team. I had accomplished what I set out to do. At the next pep rally I went out on the floor and went around with my team to look up at the students in the bleachers who hadn’t done anything. Sure, I was on the lowest team, but at least I wasn’t up there. I had accomplished something. From that point forward I adopted a new outlook on life. I was determined and optimistic. Just from doing this I benefited in more than one way. I was now in shape not just from the countless running drills that we performed, but because I had relieved all the stress from my life. More importantly I stopped my constant worrying about politics, or in other words, I was happy.

To this day I cannot remember being depressed or angry for any extended amount of time. I am happier than I am can ever remember being and am completely self confident, if not borderline cocky. I believe this is due to determination to being optimistic.