We’ve all been there. Even those smarty-pants individuals we read about or see in real life had moments of doubt. Whether some of us would like to admit it or not, we all at some point have felt like we weren’t the sharpest pencil in the pencil case. This comparison can let you wallow in pity and stay caged in your own self-doubt for the rest of your life, or it can prompt you to do something about it…
Growing up, I’ve always admired scholars- those persons who seem to read notes once and grasp concepts almost instantaneously. I have never been one of those persons. Granted, I’ve always gotten pretty good grades in school which would put me at least in the above average segment. However, I never considered myself a scholar nor was I. I was an artist– I had dreams of making it big in Hollywood through my singing, acting and film directing career. I had it all planned out in a systematic way and none of those plans included formal education. If you’ve ever heard the expression ‘If you want God to laugh tell Him your plans…’, that seemed to be the general theme for my life. Most of my ‘plans’ didn’t come to fruition when I wanted them to despite several years of trying. Sure enough, I started to doubt those dreams I had in me since the age of 5 years old.
Over the years of prodding from my loved ones and having to put up with a lot of crap in the working world, I chose to finally pursue my degree in Media and Communication Arts in 2013. Though I never ever intended to get my degree, at least what I was studying was in line with my dreams. I was so nervous but still very excited. I questioned myself on may things- I wondered if I made the right choice, I wondered if this course of study would be lucrative in the long run, and I wondered how I was going to pay for it all!
When I first started I only had money to pay for the first semester, but I stepped out on faith. I recalled a former boss who had advised me of her personal experience and how she stepped out in faith on her way to earn her degree. So step out in faith I did…I never missed any semester since doing that and I only have one more year to go thanks to hard work, support from loved ones, two scholarships and more importantly, the grace of God. The road has not been easy- putting yourself in credit card debt because of school is not my idea of fun, nor is balancing work, school, and being a good wife- but for me it’s worth it. Going back to school is one of my best decisions. I have grown so much intellectually, socially, as well as spiritually. I have overcome so may fears. For instance, I yearned to be a good public speaker like the ones I admired growing up and now I can say that I am. Before staring school I would never stand up and speak to a crowd, let alone do it without bursting in beads of sweat!
Now in my late twenties, I’ve come to discover that I am a scholar as well as an artist. I may not be one those instantaneous learners, but I have worked hard, failed, and started over may times until I grasped what I needed to and have become who I wanted to be. I find myself metamorphosing into persons I admired and augmenting qualities I didn’t think I had. Though I have yet to realize my Hollywood dreams, I have not given up- I’ve just taken another route. A route that has been extremely fulfilling. That’s the thing about life- having a general plan is good but not one that restricts you to other possibilities. You have to be fluid in life to survive it and be happy. The difference between the me of then and the me of now is that I am more more focused– I’ve stopped being lazy! I can call it being lazy because I see similarities of my former attitude in both colleagues and fellow students. They think I’m a genius and I’m not- I’m just a hard worker. The difference is in in our attitude to the problem or circumstance we are facing.
All this is good and well but you’re probably wondering what the point of this is- going back to school may not be your defining moment and that’s OK. There are many persons who have overcome the occasional dumb feeling through sheer personal development of their own devices. We all have different paths. I believe that each one of us has special talents and abilities, some of which we may not be aware of until pressure and time brings them to light. I also believe in my heart that anyone can rise to higher levels of awareness, academically or otherwise if they simply put in the work. Opportunity favours the prepared and in my experience more of those opportunities happen when you’re prepared. After all, it is common sense…
So if you feel a bit less-than, remember that you are the master of your feelings…so start feeling confident and put in the work to overcome your personal fiends.