When I began my freshman year of college, I had a serious boyfriend. A few months into the semester, he broke my heart. The breakup was ridiculously hard on me, and because of it, my grades suffered. My grades throughout my entire freshman year were average. I wasn’t involved in anything and I gave minimal effort. I wasn’t myself at all and I knew that.
Sophomore year, I began to work harder. My grades improved significantly, and I could finally feel myself moving on from the breakup. I even made the decision to graduate a semester early, which I knew would be challenging. I knew I would have to step it up if I wanted to succeed. Junior year was when I truly began to thrive. During the first week, I was an Orientation Weekend Leader, and this helped me realize that I absolutely love stepping out of my comfort zone. I joined a bunch of clubs and even became the vice president of one. I started to become involved in anything I could in order to make my college experience something I would never forget.
I have grown so much since my freshman year. When I first came to college, I was lazy, unmotivated and didn’t live up to my full potential. This year has been the most challenging, but the most rewarding by far. I won’t list every opportunity I’ve been given, but most of them have been the result of how hard I’ve worked. Seeing how much I’ve grown and matured has been an amazing feeling. From beginning an internship to being nominated for a scholarship, this year has been worth all of the effort I’ve put into it.
Why is working hard the absolute best thing you can do for yourself? It just feels good. When you ace an exam you studied your ass off for, it completely alters your mood. Who feels good about failing an exam they didn’t study at all for? And what’s even better is when your hard work is noticed by others. This semester I’ve received a handful of incredible compliments from professors, supervisors, friends and family. You don’t work hard in order to receive praise or rewards, but when your hard work is recognized, there’s no better feeling.
When you work hard, you feel good about yourself. It’s great to have something to be proud of. The next time you’re contemplating binge watching Netflix, or going to the library: choose the library. Get your work done early. When you look back on your college experience, you won’t remember the six hours of "The Office" you watched in one sitting, but you will remember the positive feedback you received from putting intensive effort into your work.
With that being said, I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for my friends and family. I’m an extremely self-motivated person, but hearing that the people I hold dear to my heart are proud of me is the best feeling in the world. The people I love are a huge reason why I keep working as hard as I do. So thank you all for everything you do for me; you know who you are. Your love and support means more to me than you’ll ever know.
Working hard is necessary to make your college experience the best it could be. Get involved, study, and study more, network, make connections, take on a leadership position, challenge yourself. When you succeed in these things, I promise you, nothing is more rewarding.