“Comparison is the thief of joy” – Theodore Roosevelt.
Time to be brutally honest. This summer was a tough one. Yes, I went to the beach, got a tan, ate great food, laughed with some amazing people and visited some new places.
It wasn’t part of the plan. I had high hopes for a shiny internship this summer. I even wrote about it a little, hoping that posting those words could bring some good news my way. I thought I was going to be working 9-5 for NBC, Fox News, ABC or another big company. But things changed.
It stung, a lot, getting those rejection emails. They came in waves. I would read “we decided to go with another candidate….” Then another message came up asking for an interview, only to turn me down in two weeks time. I beat myself up a bit, thinking all my hard work was for nothing. It’s even hurting a bit now, having to go back and think about it.
Although I could see it coming. I knew I wasn’t going to get offers from everywhere, so I was somewhat prepared for rejection emails. What I wasn’t prepared for was watching my peers get those offers.
Before you get the wrong idea, I was happy for my friends! They got amazing opportunities this summer to work towards their future careers. I want nothing but the best for them! Hearing about what they were working on was exciting.
I just couldn’t stop that voice in the back of my head which asked, “why not me?”
Scrolling through Instagram, I saw pictures of new apartments and new offices. LinkedIn had so many job updates I couldn’t keep track. Facebook was full of parents who boasted about where their son or daughter got hired for the summer. My pillows were stained with a mix of tears and mascara as I saw all the cool opportunities everyone else seem to have. I felt like I was left behind. Forgotten. That I wasn’t good enough.
But I was. I am.
I know how toxic this mindset is. I’m learning to change it. Like Roosevelt said at the beginning of my post, “comparison is the thief of joy.” I kept comparing my situation to the facades people post online. It was depressing. I could sit around and complain about how so-and-so is working and I’m not, but where would that get me?
Not far. Maybe from my kitchen to my living room, but that’s about it.
Just because I didn’t get an offer does not mean I wasn’t qualified for the job. They just went with someone else.
Yeah, it really sucks seeing people succeed while you’re stagnant. I know I’m not alone in that statement.
Instead of wasting any more energy on being upset, use it to motivate you to work harder. I know it’s my plan. I could go into my senior year saying, “what’s the point?” but I won’t. I have goals set, and I plan on achieving them.
My time will come. It may not have been this summer, but it’s coming. I can’t and I won’t give up. It’s not how I was wired. Now, it’s time for me to enjoy where I am now.