“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.
6 Replies to “End of Summer Reflections”
Here’s the thing: neither myself nor even one of my friends look back and say we are glad we worked the summers in between the high school and college years. We all now ask, where were we rushing too? Sun streaked hair and sandy bed sheets are so much more important in those years. You will work for years and years with only three weeks of PTO (which includes those five days you were laid up with the flu). Consider this a huge blessing. It may be the last full summer you will have off for a very long time. I promise you this: the rejection you experienced in the summer of 2019 will vanish the moment you land your dream job, but the fun memories will stay with you your whole life.
The more I think about it the more grateful I am to have this time away from work…at least for the time being! Thank you for the nice words!
You have so much ahead of you! You do not want to peak at 21!!🙂
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On effort: “Nothing in this world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty.”
Theodore Roosevelt gives an address in 1915. AP Photo Love always, Mom
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