I certainly didn’t think much about it while in junior college. I thought I had it all: sports achievements, decent grades, shoes that look better than my uniform… basically everything and anything a teenager wanted or needed to feel good. But then I started university, and everything was different. It was huge new world where I didn’t have anything: my friends were dispersed, I was no longer in a sports team, I didn’t belong anywhere… I just felt lost. Nobody knew me, and I didn’t know anyone either.
As uncomfortable as that felt, the “lostness” forced me to realize that that was more to me – more to anyone – than what they have done or what they had. As I got to know people and form new friendships, two things struck me:
- It’s cliché, but people are who they are on the inside, and this shines through in how they approach life. It also means that people can see who you really are based on how they see you react to things. Are you considerate of others? Do you give them the respect they deserve?
- Knowing what you value helps. For me, it was the usual myriad of values such as love and loyalty. It was also the relationships with the people I loved and my aspirations to be a psychologist. Once I had my values clear, I realised how much I really had! I wasn’t nobody. There are so many other things that define me.
I have since made many new friends, each more unique and beautiful than the ones before. They know who they are. How? They know what they value and stick by what they believe in. And it is that easy self-confidence that speaks far louder than any title.