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Determined to Succeed

Determination: firmness of purpose; resoluteness.

 In 2002 I decided to fulfill my lifelong dream of earning a college degree.  Now, this was not my first attempt at pursuing a college degree.  When I graduated from high school I had been accepted to what was then California State University Hayward; but because of lack of knowledge and financial issues, I decided to go to a local community college.  I attended the community college for about two years and nothing came from it, no degree or certificate earned.  Of course there were other times when I returned to college to complete this journey, but it was not until 2002 that I began to realize this dream.  It wasn’t easy; I worked fulltime, maintained a household, took care of my two children and attended school one night per week with weekly five hour study groups.  In the beginning I didn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, but as time passed I began to see it.  Finally, graduation came; I walked across the stage and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services in June of 2005.  Wow, I did it!  Success!  However, my educational journey did not end there because in the fall of 2005 I applied to the Masters of Social Work (MSW) program at California State University East Bay, the former CSU Hayward.  Yes, that’s right, back where I started.

In September of 2005 I began the journey in the MSW program.  The first week I felt as though I had made a terrible mistake and was in over my head.  As a matter of fact, I remember saying to myself that I was going to drop out of the program because I couldn’t do it.  Although this feeling was strong, I didn’t drop out of the program because that small voice that creeps in from time to time spoke and told me don’t give up, you can do it.  Of course I wrestled with the small voice for a while, but in the end the voice won and I’m so glad that it did.  I completed the program and graduated in June 2007 with a Master’s of Social Work degree.

You might ask, “What does this story have to do with anything?”  I would say it has everything to do with anything because although there were many obstacles and more fear than was necessary, I was determined to get a college degree.  I didn’t only get one degree, but I earned two degrees in 5 years.  I’m sharing this in hopes that it will inspire or motive someone to keep on trying to be “determined to succeed”.  We all have dreams that we keep secretly locked away.  Maybe hoping and wishing that “someday” we’ll see them come true.  However, we allow those dreams to be swept away by fear, lack of self-confidence or other excuses that we come up with.  None of this matters as long as we have life and believe that we can do anything and everything, with God’s help.  We have to learn to face fear head on, run through it or over it and never back down; especially when it comes to our dreams and life’s passions.

Final thoughts, if we want your realize our dreams we have to get out there and do something.  Stop locking away the dreams in hopes that “someday” will come because it won’t unless we are actively pursuing our dreams.  If we don’t try, we’ve already failed.  “Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson

As always, remember to Live, Laugh, Love


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