This I Believe

Valerie - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Entered on April 28, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: work
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Why Wait?

When I was younger accomplishments came easily. Information at school was practically fed to me, and achievements seemed to fall into my lap. Without a formal audition, I performed with a professional opera company, and without even applying I was nominated and mentioned in “Who’s Who,” a book of students who have achieved a high merit in academics. From such a background I believed that if I waited long enough, more things would come and I would never really have to do much work to achieve whatever I desired. However, it has been proven to me now that in order to achieve anything in life, work must be put forth and waiting for things to happen will get me no where.

By the time my sophomore year of high school ended, I discovered that I was no longer, “smooth sailing,” as some may say. No clubs had personally asked me to join, I no longer had honors grades, and no random awards had fallen into my lap. At first I was shocked, wondering where had the progress gone? Everything seemed to be falling apart, and I wanted someone to fix it for me. However, I soon realized that no one could raise my grades, write articles for the paper, or join clubs for me. If I wanted any of the previously stated, than I had to do it myself. I decided that I would do whatever it would take to improve my situation. I started seeing teachers, staying up late to study, and sometimes spending my lunches at club meetings. As I engaged in these activities the thought crossed my mind that working diligently was the only way to achieve anything in life, so I looked externally to find other examples of my new dogma.

Sarah Jessica Parker, one of my favorite actresses, helped to substantiate my belief.

Parker was born into a somewhat impoverished family and, as a teenager, she worked to help support her family while she trained as a dancer and singer. Her family then moved to New Jersey to aid her potential career. This, in my mind, was a huge sacrifice, by both her and her family in order to achieve Parker’s goal. She continued to train assiduously in theater and eventually was given the opportunity to perform multiple times on Broadway and with the Metropolitan Opera Company. I believe that if Parker had not continued to train and make sacrifices in order to achieve her goals, she never would have had the unique opportunities she did.

Anyone who has ever achieved great success has exerted significant effort in gaining their status. Everyone from Parker, to Bill Gates, to entire countries have achieved their goals by taking initiative and performing the necessary actions. Our country would never have achieved its independence had we not fought for what we believed in and worked for our cause. America might still be part of England had the colonists of our country waited for independence. Personal experiences and observations of successful people have proven to me that good things do not necessarily come to those who wait, but instead, to those who work for what they want. This I believe.