Take it easy

Rachel Schneider , Opinion Writer

Imagine you are in school and you are getting back your test results from a difficult English class. The teacher hands you your test, you flip it over and there’s a big fat 60% on the front. You look around the classroom and realize  you were the only one who did so poorly. Your eyes start to fill with tears but you try to hide it as to not make a scene. You are ashamed and don’t know what to do. Doubts fill your head and you think to yourself— “I’m not smart”. Everyone else did so well, I’m the problem. This ruins the rest of your day.  

Ever since I was little, I’ve always been the type of person who wants to do things right the first time. I don’t allow myself to make a mistake, and if I do, I feel super embarrassed and end up closing myself off from people so I don’t feel humiliated again. It might be not doing well on a test or paper or not understanding what drill we are doing in soccer and then tripping over myself trying to attempt it. Despite all of this, there’s one saying that always gets me through: “Don’t be so hard on yourself.” I’ve heard this many times from my mom when she’s comforting me over something I’m stressing about.

 Obviously, you should always strive to do your best because the amount of effort you put into something affects the result you get but I also think that you should be able to make mistakes without feeling completely ashamed and unable to improve. You messed up a play during football practice ? Ask questions, learn and understand what went wrong and try again. If you fail while trying, repeat until you succeed. Don’t be so hard on yourself when you make a mistake!

For me, it’s always an ongoing battle, but nobody’s perfect. If you find that you’re doubting yourself, realize you are worth so much more than whatever doubts are circling around in your head. Instead of criticizing yourself for every little mistake, try finding at least one positive thing in it, like maybe how you got back up after falling or how you balanced your emotions while receiving a bad score. 

Beating yourself up over mistakes does no good. Being hard on yourself  isn’t something that should make you feel isolated. Talking to a friend can actually really help and they can be there to support you because they are there to lift you up when you feel down.  To quote one of my favorite songs by Jess Glynne, “Don’t be so hard on yourself, learn to forgive, learn to let go. Everyone trips, everyone falls.”