New Year, new beginnings; or so they say. I believe it’s less about new beginnings, and more about improving what’s already there. 2015 was a relatively calm year for me, yet at the same time very eventful. My resolution for 2015 was to get out of my comfort zone, and get more invested into my future. I had a resolution to stress less, and get more involved in my school and community. My main goal was to be more confident.

The beginning of 2015 didn’t start off as well as I had hoped.  My daily routine started out pretty drab. After I completed my volunteer work every day, I only really went to school and returned home. I started off 2015 just getting out of a state of mind that was not good for me at all. I lacked a lot of self-confidence and didn’t socialize much. If you’ve even been there, you know how much of a toll that can have on your mood. I was able to start 2015 with a fresh mind, but still had a lot of work to do.

I started off by looking for a job- which by the way, is a bad idea when you have no experience- I didn’t get any jobs or even job interviews. I blamed it on my lack of experience, but it also had a lot to do with my no-good resume. Instead I worked on passing my G1, and focused on my cooperative education placement for the following school year. I worked hard on it, and was able to get a placement at Sunnybrook hospital, which I really invested some hard work for during the duration of my placement. The following summer, by recommendation of a close friend, I applied to GEM. I had no idea about the internship opportunities available, but I really wanted to get into the program, for the opportunity, and also so I would have something to do with my free time. I ended up with an amazing mentor who I love talking to. I didn’t think I would be comfortable with a mentor, and doubted it at first. But what I’ve found is that my mentor is incredibly relatable, and we have more things in common than I thought. Sometime after I got accepted into GEM, and before I met my mentor, I applied for this internship opportunity, and got it.

All of those things happened in a span of only a couple of months, and I doubted myself all the way through. I even thought I would fail my G1- even though all my friends reassured me that it was incredibly easy. Although I did have many, many successes, I also had many failures. 2015 helped me understand that it’s not about those failures; it’s about the actions you take after those failures. It’s important to not let your failures keep you down.

Tabassum Lakhi is a Creative Writing Intern at GEM and also a GEMgirl.