You could stand to lose some weight
You’re a great person
You have so much potential”
If someone spoke to you like this, which statement do you think is going to stick in your mind the longest? Yes, this morning I experienced the unfortunate inevitability in my nature that makes me focus on the negatives.
This morning brought the announcement of Year 12 VCE results. Every student received a study score out of 50 for each of their subjects, plus an ATAR score between <30 and 99.95. My ATAR was very good, I exceeded not only the mark I need for my first uni preference, but also my ‘Realistic Goal’ and my ‘Pipe Dream’.
Unfortunately, I found myself fixating instead on my study score for French. Having topped the year level in that subject, I felt I was pretty well set to get quite a good mark. And I did receive a mark that is nothing to be laughed at. However, it wasn’t quite as good as I was hoping, and I unintentionally let that dampen my mood.
Why? Why do I do things like this? I actually frustrated myself this morning. Much as I tried to exercise my Powers of Positive Thinking, I just could not let go of the fact that French and one or two of my other marks were a little lower than I’d hoped/expected.
I have talked it through and thought it over this morning and this afternoon, and I now I’ve been able to put that aside and be really happy with my results and proud of my efforts, but I still can not understand what made me think like that to begin with.
It is a phenomenon that I have experienced before though. And I don’t think I’m alone. I think there is a part of everyone – be it insecurity or vanity, misguided modesty or just plain insanity – that tends to hone in on the negatives, and blur out the rest. I don’t know why we do it, but we do.
Why shouldn’t I enjoy my results, guilt-free? Why is there a part of me – conscious or subconsious – that tried to stop me feeling proud of myself?
I don’t think these are questions I will ever be able to answer. I also don’t think this will be the last time I face this situation. I can only hope that when it happens again, I will be surrounded by the same lovely people who helped me see straight today, and I’ll come out on top again.