Hey everyone, my name’s Elizabeth Tsyben (she/her) and I’m in my second year of Origins of Disease and have been the OOD rep for the Life Sci Society this past year! In the time I’ve taken to advance my academic career this past year, I’ve struggled with feeling small compared to my peers. However, in reshaping my thinking I’ve been able to validate my own journey throughout my time in university!
Let's say you find yourself scrolling through LinkedIn. You see your peers getting scholarships that’ll open a plethora of doors, and internships that will catalyze their careers. It's easy to size yourself down and feel as though you can not measure up to the same level of success - you won’t be able to become one of those trailblazing 20-somethings. However, success does not follow one-size-fits-all criteria.
For me, this has meant realizing that what my peers are pursuing may not be the path for me. I might have the same end goal as someone, but the steps I take to get there, in the end, could be totally different - and that’s part of the success itself!
I’ve also begun visualizing those little wins we see every day as achievements of their own. Joining that club you’ve been meaning to or finishing that essay ahead of time. In counting these achievements, I’ve been able to feel more accomplished. Though they may seem like trivial achievements at their base level, any step aiding towards your own betterment in some way shape or form is success itself.
Success does not have to be one size fits all. You don’t need to ace the MCAT or land that scholarship just to be able to say you’ve made it. Individualizing your own path and validating every step - no matter how small - you take along the way are the ways in which you can make your progress yours!