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Confidence. My college essay. This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

By , Dover, NH
If you were to ask a number of kids at my high school to describe me in one statement, I bet you most would sadly say "lacking confidence". While having no one relatively close to my age in my immediate, as well as extended family, I formed a path for years to follow of feeling alone and constantly keeping things to myself. In school especially, I refrained from expressing my thoughts and put so much of my attention on the lives of other people. For the longest time, I really did not mind being the listener. Their stories were so interesting and full of excitement; I was always entertained.

In the midst of purposely never being the center of attention, I created an addicting habit of being obsessed with appearances and acceptance from others. My obsession of trying to impress people looks wise has come with an unfortunate cost; literally. I dare you to name any kind of cosmetic or beauty product, I'm more than certain I've probably bought it. I've gone to great lengths to astound my peers physically and let that hinder my confidence in what I say and do. I've put all of my focus in presenting myself with outer beauty in an attempt to gain confidence and cover my fear of being rejected socially.

During the summer going into my senior year, I started the great college search. Beginning this long process was so overwhelming at first with all the applications, qualifications, tours, and deciding what I wanted to do during the years to come. It really hit me that sooner rather than later, I was going to be taken out of my so called "comfort zone" and expelled into the real world. This none the less scared the living daylights out of me. While looking through the pamphlets of colleges I wanted to attend, I was not surprised to find that "blondes most accepted" or "average number of friends" were nowhere to be found. As cliché as it sounds, the light bulb finally went on. I realized that while being caught up in a world of trying to strike my peers appearance wise, I forgot to focus on what I know is more important and satisfy myself.

Don't get me wrong, I've always known that education truly is the key to success, but I would be lying if I told you it was always a top priority of mine. It was a bittersweet feeling when I discovered my class rank and GPA sitting in my guidance counselors office, because I know that they did not reflect my potential and were affected by my out of whack priorities. This was the eye opener for me and it was here where I decided for once in my life I wanted to satisfy me, myself, and I. Over the next couple of months I made an honest effort to focus less on other people and their opinions and focus on myself.

When my homeroom teacher placed my report card on my desk upside down, I was nothing less than anxious to flip it over immediately. I knew how hard I had worked academically that quarter and was just hoping for the best. I scanned my eyes down the column of straight As and felt something that was so new to me; real self-assurance. I didn't care who was staring at me, or how dumb I must've looked smiling from ear to ear at a piece of paper. For once I wasn't concerned about what people thought about me, because I was incredibly proud of myself. I of course still make a huge effort to present myself well on the surface, but I now have a new found confidence that will help me carry a good head on my shoulders into the real world, and is greater than a perfectly straight smile or bleach blonde hair could possibly ever give me.



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