Success Is Great, But Failure Is Better

Success Is Great, But Failure Is Better

Fail and fail often.

Don’t let success get to your head, but don’t let failure get to your heart. Know that things don’t always work out as planned, and that is OK!

For many millennials, it’s easiest to just give up when something doesn’t go your way. But take heart. Success is great, but failure is better. The reality is, you’re going to fail... a lot.

Failure does not mean your idea was not good or that your dream isn’t valid.

Failure means you have more to learn.

Failure is GOOD.

It shows you that you did something wrong and that you need to take a redirection. It’s an opportunity to come back stronger with a better attack plan. It’s a second chance.

Having failed many times in my life, there’s one thing for sure: failing sucks. It sucks being disappointed. It sucks not succeeding on the first try. However, you can learn to become a good failure.

Failing is inevitable, which is why it is important to learn from our mistakes. You’ll learn more from a single failure than a lifetime of success. Here’s what you can do when you mess up: accept what you can’t change, keep an open mind, maintain a positive attitude, and know that nothing will be perfect.

When I was a sophomore in high school, I was on an engineering team at my school. I was extremely confident in our abilities as a team, so when we didn’t advance to the world finals, I was devastated. The next year, however, my team placed second at the national competition, and we advanced to the world finals. If I had allowed that initial failure to consume me, I wouldn’t have been successful the next year.

It was not easy to advance to the world finals, but because I took my previous failure as a learning opportunity, my team succeeded. I knew I couldn’t change the past, so I didn’t focus on it. I kept an open mind about the competition and did not allow my bitterness to harden me, thus maintaining a positive attitude. My team wasn’t perfect, and I knew that. But I knew if we worked hard, we would succeed. We did.

Every failure is feedback on how to improve. Nothing works unless you do, and nothing works exactly the way you want it to. Failure is life’s greatest teacher; it’s nothing to be scared of. If we are so focused on not failing, we will never succeed.

So fail, and fail often.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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A Letter To My Roommate

What I learned from living with you for eight months.

There is only a month left of school. Only a month left of my first year of college. It's almost unbelievable how much everything has changed. As I look back and reflect, I realize one of the most impactful parts about leaving home and coming to Emory was living with a complete stranger.

Perhaps not a complete stranger, but my roommate, Rehnuma, and I had only communicated through Facebook Messenger for three months. We also never called each other. I had never heard her voice until I met her on move-in day. After setting up my dorm, I looked around my room and paused at the second bed. I would be sharing a room and it wouldn't be my sister sleeping in the other bed.

I would never have imagined how our relationship would change over the next couple months. We began learning how to maneuver around each other's quirks and habits. She sometimes stayed up late to study in the room while I was trying to sleep. I liked to keep the window open while I was in the room. Initially, we would ask each other if it was ok to open a window or turn on the heat. A month later, I would turn off the heat without asking if the room was becoming unbearably stuffy. Silently acknowledging each other's preferences allowed us to avoid conflict and show we care about each other.

Moreover, we weren't just roommates, but we felt more like family.

Sharing a small space forced us to see each other at our most private times. We helped each other recover from bad test grades and offer advice about our schedules. I would tell my parents about what's going on, but Rehnuma understood what I was experiencing better than they would. She would text me about the food she put in the fridge and that I am welcome to eat it. I would wake her up for class if she slept through her alarm. We posted our schedules on the wall so we would know where the other person was during the day.

The moment I realized the extent of my roommate's thoughtfulness was the morning of my birthday. I had just woke up and sleepily grabbed my phone to check the time. She was going to the bathroom and wished me happy birthday as she smiled.

"Your birthday gift is on your desk," she said before leaving. A set of two beautifully designed journals and a card sat on my desk. She knew I love to write and wrote in my journal daily. Despite only living with me for two and a half months, she gifted me with an item I would definitely appreciate and use.

I am fortunate enough to have a roommate who I get along with, who genuinely cares for me, and whom I can count on for a favor. It's always reassuring to know someone has your back. Quite literally in my case since I almost fell out of my bed once and woke up to her trying to move me onto my mattress (Thank you, Rehnuma!)

My friends ask me how it is to live with a roommate; do we get along or just tolerate each other's presence? I always say we are definitely friends.

I believe the key to having a good roommate experience is by not ignoring them and getting by to avoid a fight but to make an effort to show you care for each other in small ways.

Sometimes you still won't get along, but it will make it absolutely better when you are both nice to each other.

Due to certain circumstances, we won't be roommates next year. I can honestly say I am going to miss living with her. Rehnuma taught me what living with another person should be like: being considerate to one another, wordlessly helping the other out, and supporting each other.

Nonetheless, I do look forward to getting to know what it is like to live with my new roommate.

Cover Image Credit: Wardha Mowla

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To The Twelve-Year-Old Me, You'll Be Okay

Better than okay, you’ll be amazing.

I would ask how it’s going, but I already know how happy your life is going and I’m so glad you’re doing well.

There are some things I need to tell you about what you’re going to experience later in life.

By the end of the year, you’re going to lose someone very important to you.

It’s going to be the first time you’ve ever felt so much sadness.

You’re going to cry.

And you’re going to change.

A lot.

You’re going to fight the change, but ultimately, you’re going to lose.

You won’t be who you once were.

But trust me.

You’ll be okay.

Because the next year, you’re going to fall in love for the very first time!

You’ll feel whole again.

And then he’ll emotionally abuse you.

He’ll cheat on you.

This will be your first of many heartbreaks.

I wish I could say you’ll learn your lesson, but not yet.

You’ll get emotionally abused by way too many boyfriends than you ever could have imagined.

You’ll have your heart broken more times than Disney prepared you for.

But they did get one thing right.

Your prince will come.

You’ll be okay.

You’re so popular right now.

Everyone loves you and wants to be your friend.

In high school, that will change.

The people who you now call friends will turn on you,

They are going to bully you.

And it’s going to hurt, but...

You’ll be okay.

Of all the times you’ve been hurt by boys, bullies, or family, you’ll never be prepared for what happens when you turn 18.

You’re going to lose something that causes you more pain than anything in your life ever has.

It will cause you to grow and leave toxic people behind.

You’ll be okay.

Don’t let this discourage you.

Because through all the bad, there will be so much good.

You’ll be happier than you ever have been.

You’ll find the love of your life.

You’ll discover that your heart can hold more love than you could have ever imagined.

You’ll grow closer to your family.

You’ll go to college.

You’ll join a sorority.

You’ll go on adventures.

You’ll laugh.

You’ll smile.

And most importantly...

You’ll be better than okay...

You’ll be amazing.

With lots of love,

Your Future Self

Cover Image Credit: @jakkaiser/Instagram

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