This I Believe

Peter - Princeton, New Jersey
Entered on February 13, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

This I Believe

I believe that hard work is not necessary to succeed in life. Some stuffy old adult might say that this is ridiculous; look at all the people working horrible jobs, working in a deli or a convenience store because they didn’t work hard. However, what of their own personal success? They might have achieved their own goals, such as working easy for a moderate pay, without working for hours and hours on end. I believe that they did. Moreover, these people are probably happy with their lives, and thank goodness for that. What matters is how happy you are with your own success; hard work does not define it.

Last summer, I began to look at Universities in the UK, and the one which I admired most was the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. I began to fill out an application for this particular school, which I naturally had made my first choice, but all the time I was very nervous. The previous year, I had taken three AP exams and I had received threes on all of them. Furthermore, I had gained an 1820 on my SAT. This might not sound all that bad, but St. Andrews wanted fours and fives on the AP’s and at least a 1950 on the SAT. Clearly, I had not worked very hard the previous year and it looked like I was not very cut out for this place. While I anxiously waited for the reply, I kept wondering if I had succeeded in my goals up to this point or not; I kept telling myself that of course I have because I was happy with my performance. This didn’t really calm my nerves though.

In late October, I got an acceptance package. After about a week of being on the greatest high ever, I knew that I had achieved success because I had achieved my goals, but I definitely could have worked harder. However, this does not matter; I got into my first choice University and I was elated.

Now this is only my version of success. Yours can be completely different. If you think success is rocking the world, skip school and jam; if you think success is starting a business, work bloody hard in school; if you think success is performing moderately in school, do that. Your own success is only what you want it to be.