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Difficult Or Challenging Situation Essay

Who hasn’t had a tough time? Who hasn’t had those times that make or break a person’s’ self-esteem,or the times that make a person stronger or that make them weak? The song lyrics, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” by Kelly Clarkson, are not only catchy but very true. These difficult situations happen every day, affecting people all over the world. Difficult situations can affect people in ways that make a person stronger and ways that make them weaker.

Difficult situations can make a person stronger by the way he or she allows the situation to impact them. For example, if a fun family of four loses their house in a raging, uncontrollable, fire, that consumes objects in its path, but there was no loss of life, it can impact the family positively. Realizing the importance of the close-knit-bunch called family over material things can change the way he or she conducts his or her life. It can bring a family closer, stronger, and more together than ever before. In addition, another difficult situation one can overcome is the loss of a loved one. When a loved one passes away many feel crushed, afraid, and broken. They feel like their whole wide world has come tumbling down to the ground. Believe it or not, this situation can affect a person for the better. If the loved one passes away from lung cancer due to the life long addiction to smoking, this can promote a person to make better choices and save themselves from the slow suicide they are committing with every cigarette they smoke. Therefore, there are many ways difficult situations can affect a person in a positive way.

Tough times can affect people in a way that does not make them stronger, but makes them weak. It can affect them in a way that brings them down and make them feel unloved and worthless. An example of an adverse situation bringing an insecure student down into the dumps, is when the student allows a bully to define who they are. When listening to a bully, one begins to believe what they say. The bully begins to have complete control over the person, making themselves conscious about the teeny tiny flaws. They begin to lose self-esteem and they begin to believe the lies of the big, bad, bully. In return, feelings of despair, depression and worthlessness begin to invade their mind like little aliens of depression, and they feel like their life is not worth anything and, in some cases, they end it all. In addition to bullying, losing a job is another example of a tough time that can bring someone down. The loss of a job can cause financial problems and financial trouble can cause people to act in extreme ways. If circumstances get awful enough, a stressed father, trying to provide for his family, may even break the law to make ends meet. The father might steal to provide for himself and his family, or sell illegal substances all because of the problems of finances. This type of behavior can lead to major life changing consequences, such as jail. Difficult times can have many negative effects on a person’s’ life.

Therefore, difficult times can influence people positively by making them stronger, and negatively by making them weaker. Each person deals with tough situations in their own unique way. They can make or break a person in the blink of an eye. As you can see Kelly Clarkson’s song isn’t just a head-bopping-catchy-tune, but a life lesson. It teaches us to learn from our difficult situations, and climb over the huge mountains keeping us from overcoming them. Overall, rough times can change lives forever.

Many of us faced challenges in our formative years and we struggled with them. Some of those struggles might have changed who we are or how we later approached life. Marilyn Campbell is an overcomer. She wrestled with shyness in her young years. Before you read her essay, learn a little more about Marilyn’s background from an update she sent to me:

“I never did quite get the opportunity to thank you [for helping me develop my essay]. Regarding my college process:

I applied to three schools early action: Harvard University, Brown University, and Georgetown University; I applied to Tulane University as a backup school regular decision (it can be considered a backup for those people who reside in-state).

I am happy to say that I was accepted at Brown, at Georgetown (thank you very much!), and at Tulane; I was deferred from Harvard; I am not applying to any more schools.

If there’s something I learned about applying to colleges and watching my friends apply to them, I would recommend applying to as many early action schools as possible by the deadlines. This takes away the stress and work of doing several applications at a very busy time of the year (one is taking exams or they are hanging over our heads).

At the very least, if one applies to one school early action or early decision, s/he should not wait until they receive that school’s response to begin filling out all the other applications waiting in the wings. I know that it is very tempting to wait, but after seeing what this has done to several of my friends, I highly recommend getting an early start.

Finally, I suggest that students don’t blow off their freshman year. If that happens, one will spend the next three years trying to bring up those grades.

Thanks again!


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Marilyn’s essay:

When I was a young, awkward adolescent, I considered myself to be a shy person, especially around boys. Because of this, my experiences at a coed middle school intimidated me somewhat. So, for the past five years, I have attended an all-girls school, which has helped me to become a stronger person. I have overcome my shyness and insecurities and developed much more confidence.

Ironically, I believe that my shyness, something that I consider a communication barrier, has ultimately led me to focus on a field for my life’s work: communications. Despite my aversion to it early on in life, I now love speaking to and interacting with people, be it as a friend, teacher, or public speaker. I now have a passion for stimulating conversation, and that enthusiasm manifests itself in three different and important aspects of my life outside of the classroom: peer support, volunteer work, and music.

Peer support is a high school-sponsored program through which juniors and seniors are selected to work with eighth graders who attend Sacred Heart. It involves an intensive three-day workshop where student leaders learn how to listen effectively to and become mentors for the younger students. I love this work. Once a week, I get to speak to these impressionable boys and girls about anything that I feel is important. I enjoy learning about their lives and their issues and exploring possible solutions to their problems. We study today’s society and its impact on them. I see much of my old self in these young people and that memory has helped me to help them become more confident about their everyday lives.

My volunteer work centers on teaching, through a program called Summerbridge. After school, I go to a nearby public school and tutor learning-disadvantaged preteens. Instead of dealing with the students’ personal issues, as I do in peer support, the Summerbridge focus is more on communication through education. By working with these younger students, I have come to understand the importance of helping them comprehend and apply what they learn in the classroom. Their motivation, given their circumstances, is remarkable. We discuss in detail what they are learning so that I can keep them interested and motivated. Summerbridge is another example of how communication issues are very important to me.

Not surprisingly, music has emerged as another, perhaps indirect, avenue for me to communicate with others. Singing allows me to convey my deep and personal emotions with others. When I sing, I am transported to another realm. The mundane everyday world around me disappears, and I am enveloped in my own, new space, especially when I am performing onstage. When I act, I am transformed, feeling the happiness, sadness, impishness, or even confusion that my character feels. My performance taps into that part of me where those qualities dwell, and I love sharing it with my audience. Music is a very special form of communication for me.

Perhaps the person I am today is a compensation for who I was years ago. That awkward twelve-year old, however, is no more. Now I want to show the world what I can do. Communication has become my passion. It will be my future.

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