This I Believe

Jaison - Naperville, Illinois
Entered on September 16, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: work
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This I Believe

What would it be like if there were no superstars like Dwyane Wade, LaDainian Tomlinson, David Beckham, or Alfonso Soriano? They practice and strive to always improve. Their persistence through hard work and effort helps them improve the skills they need to do what they love. I believe that hard work pays off, and if you put in the time the results will come.

I have gone to the IMA or Illinois Music Association four times now for piano competitions. To even be able to get into these competitions you have to work your tail off and practice all the time. Sometimes I even had to sacrifice doing things I really wanted to do, and I had to stay focused, especially when I was memorizing the composition. When I made mistakes I would get frustrated, but had to continue giving it my all. Also if you even want to do well in these competitions you have to practice even more. Along the long journey that I took to go down to Daley College I usually would even air practice, which would be like playing it with your hands in the air without a piano, and try to calm down and keep my self focused. The tensest part of the entire day was the part where you just waited. When sitting waiting for my turn in for what seemed like an eternity, my hands and fingers started to sweat because I know how tough the competition is. When I finally get my turn to go and play, I say to myself, “Stay focused,” because I knew every single eye was staring down upon me sitting at the piano. I knew that if I were to mess up, even the slightest mistake, everyone would hear it. I put that thought out of my mind, and started to play. I really had to stay focused because the tiniest loss of concentration would make me lose my spot in the music. My hands were sweating like crazy, but I managed to make it and do pretty good. I was narrowed down to me and one other kid for the top two places. I ended up in second place, but that is good enough for me. Out of those four times that I have gone to these competitions I have got a trophy two of those times now.

As Ray Bradbury says, “I know you’ve heard it a thousand times before. But its true – hard work pays off. If you want to be good, you have to practice, practice, practice. If you don’t love something, then don’t do it!” So if you have something that you love to do whether it is a sport, playing an instrument, or something that you just can’t stop doing, I encourage you to keep at it, and practice it because I believe that hard work does pay off.