If you’re looking for a sign, this is it.

Life can get really hard, sometimes. I know it. You know it. Your local barista knows it. There are days where you just don’t want to deal with the world. Days when you just want to give up, shut the world out, and not wake up. Maybe you’re dreading an exam, maybe you lost a loved one, or maybe, it’s just Monday. Whatever the case may be, know you are not alone, and that this, too, shall pass. With each passing second, you are getting older. You are growing. And, whenever life sucks, it doesn’t matter how you do it- you can run, you can walk, or you can even crawl- all you have to do, is keep. moving. forward.

What’s the point?

Here are 13.

1. Your dreams are waiting for you.

Remember those plans you made in your head when you finally thought you found what you were passionate about? You said, “I think I can do this.” You were excited and full of hope, kind of like a seven-year-old who was just told that s/he was finally going to Disneyland in the summer. You still can. All it takes is baby steps. When you collected your thoughts and formulated your goals, you changed the course of the universe because now they exist, and they are waiting for you to accomplish them. Remember that feeling of hope, and hold it close to you. Every time you feel like giving up, know that with a bit of effort, you will reach what you set out to do; and when you do, you will know that there’s no better feeling, and you will be thankful you got out of bed and kept going.

2. You have everything you need.

Everything you need to succeed is within you. It’s the blood that runs through your veins. It’s the willpower of your brain. It’s the fire in your soul in which you can ignite. Don’t make excuses. The world was here before us, and it doesn’t owe you anything, but it has already given you what you need for you to reach your destiny ever since you were born. Use it.

3. There’s nobody else like you.

You’ve probably heard this so many times, but it’s true. Aside from your unique DNA, your experiences have sharpened your skills as you have grown. Don’t waste them. You are an asset to every life you touch and everyone you meet. Don’t EVER sell yourself short.

4. You owe it to your eight-year-old self.

S/he is somewhere inside you, rooting for you, everyday. S/he believes in you and your goals and dreams with his/her whole heart, and s/he is so hopeful you are going to make it. You need to prove that s/he’s right. You need to make him/her proud. You owe it to yourself.

5. Failure is normal.

There isn’t a laid out map to success. There’s no ladder. It’s not a one-way road. There will be bumps, stoplights, detours, forks, accidents, and bad weather in which you have to overcome. It’s gonna get hard, but that’s the only way you know you’re doing something right. It’s one of the biggest paradoxes of life: To succeed, you must first fail. Sometimes more than once. And, that is completely okay. The only way to truly fail is to stop trying.

6. Nothing lasts forever.

To some this is bad news, but to others this is good news. Everything in this life is ephemeral. One day the sun will stop rising, and we will all turn to dust, as with all the mistakes we’ve made. Whatever you’re going through right now, it will not last forever. So, keep going. Use the human nature of mortality to your advantage. Because, this, too, shall pass.

7. The only way from here is up.

If you’ve hit rock bottom, good news. You can only go up from here. Start climbing. Build a ladder. Ask for help. Do whatever you need to do to move forward, because forward from rock bottom only means growth.

8. You can inspire others.

You have the ability to share your experiences and lessons you’ve learned from your failures and successes to help someone. If you don’t give up now, and you reach your goals, you can inspire someone, who is going through a hard time that reminds you of all the times you felt like giving up, to move forward, just like you did. You can be an inspiration for someone to better their lives, and in doing so, it makes the world a less sucky place to live in. Change begins with you.

9. You are strong.

The human body is designed to take a lot of crap. Did you know that one matchbox sized chunk of bone can support over 9 tons of weight? Not only are you physically strong, but you are mentally strong as well. The limit of your mind when you break the barriers of your own fear of failure or not being “good enough” ceases to exist. Wake up everyday, force to look at yourself in the mirror, take a deep breath, and aloud say, “I am strong. I can do this,” and last but not least, believe it. You might not believe it the first time around, but if you feed your mind and soul those words of courage enough, you will believe it, and that is when you will succeed.

10. It really could be worse.

Think of the hardships of your past. Reflect on them. Now, think of the hardships of those who have come before you. Reflect on that. Learn from that. Realize that there will always be worse evils in the world, and if you have the ability to be reading this right now, consider yourself blessed. Move forward, and stop throwing a pity party for yourself. No one is going to come and save you. You have to save yourself. You have to be the hero of your own story. Let yourself be heard and be great, so your successes may echo to the parts of this universe darker than your current storm.

11. You are your biggest and only competition.

That’s it. Just you. The person you see in the mirror every morning is all you have to compete with. Not your classmates, not your neighbors, not your enemies. Just. You. Don’t focus on anyone else. Stop overthinking. Stop telling yourself you aren’t good enough. You only need to be better than who you were yesterday, and that only takes a simple effort to move forward onto bigger and better things. Once you truly grasp that concept, you will always win.

12. Someone out there is looking up to you.

Whether it’s your younger siblings, your student at Sunday school, a classmate, or even your parents, someone is looking up to you. Someone out there thinks of you as a leader. They rely on you to show them that it is perfectly okay to dream big because it is possible to make it into reality. You are inspiring someone else, and whether you know who s/he is, you must set a good example and standard so that they can keep moving forward, too.

13. It’s always the darkest before dawn.

Understand that the most difficult struggles are the ones that come right before the breakthrough. Stay persistent because at any given moment you’ll hit the tip of the iceberg, and success will greet you its warmest hello.

“Don’t watch the clock; do what it does. Keep going.”

Sam Levenson


  1. Lee Ann says:

    Hello Maiuseful,
    I thoroughly enjoyed reading the 13 Reasons Why! It says so much, I’ll need to send you a copy of a prayer I follow in life. It’s similar, but different in many ways.
    You may not know this, but we are very proud of you and pray your able to be strong for yourself. To complete the goal or goals you reach for in your life time.
    We are here if you need someone to bend an ear. We are good listeners.
    Continue to share, we want to know how your life is going.
    Always Loving You,
    Grndpa & Grndma Quam

    Liked by 1 person

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