As a teenager, it’s dangerously easy to fall into a hole of despair when trying to uphold the countless standards placed upon us. You need to get the scholarship. You need to be the sports captain. You need to have all A’s.
Setting these goals isn’t the problem, it’s the attitude around what happens if you don’t that is. We are instantly deemed a failure; in most cases, it’s not even our teachers or parents telling us this, it’s ourselves.
Success is a personal achievement, and cannot compare to anyone else’s. Claiming that it can only be attained by reaching a certain GPA or gaining a specific amount of money is rather narrow-minded. Having one definition for accomplishment completely ignores the idea of life being ultimately individual. The complexity of life, and the fact being that there are numerous paths of it, denies there being one sole definition of success.
Success is determined by various factors, whether it be fulfillment, wisdom, peace, and so forth. Triumph is closely tied to happiness as well; can you wholeheartedly have a victory without having joy as well? In the end, it’s about self-satisfaction and whether you meet the expectations you’ve created for yourself.
Maybe you don’t have a 4.0. Maybe you didn’t get into the college of your dreams. Maybe things just didn’t turn out the way you hope they would. This does not mean you are a failure. You do not need to be a part of a prearranged plan that isn’t able to be grasped by everyone.
Deviate from the implemented standard of success. Personalize it instead, and set goals accordingly. Much like beauty is in the eye of the beholder, success is as well.