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There are a few scenes in the hit Christmas movie The Polar Express where a girl, aptly named, Hero Girl is asked if she is sure about something. Whether it’s helping another passenger, solving a life or death situation, or she’s always asked, “Are you sure?”. For most of the movie, she stops herself and becomes self-conscious. It’s not until the end of the movie does she finally reply, “Absolutely” and she’s proven right for this self-confidence. Being a young mixed-raced girl I was so excited to see someone who vaguely looked like me on screen. Immediately I found myself attached to this girl. This past Christmas I found myself watching the Polar Express and for the first time in my adult life, I found myself relating to this little girl again.

I can’t think of the number of times when people ask me, “Are you sure about this?”. Don't get me wrong, considering everything in a situation is important. But, there’s a difference between making a controversial decision and being impulsive. As I grow a little bit older I realize that a lot of the hard choices that I make in life don’t have a “right answer”. Or if there is a right answer it’s not immediately apparent. Needless to say, I think that making tough choices is...well tough.

But, it’s worst when everyone has an opinion on what you should or should not be doing. When someone asks, “Are you sure about this?” it makes me feel like I’m making the wrong decision even if I know that I’m making the right choice for myself.

During the college years, everything feels uncertain. Questioning yourself isn’t a good use of your time. It’s impossible not to make mistakes. Sometimes your judgment is wrong. But you can’t stumble into decisions. You have to be confident in yourself. And if you are wrong you need to be confident in your ability to fix or live with the mistake that you made. After all, you are the person who has to live with whatever choices you make.

Lately, I’ve been trying to listen to myself more when it comes to making tough choices. I journal or debate with myself and I let myself have time to listen to my own opinion. When I do need help I go to people that I actually trust for advice and ignore anyone else who has an opinion. If I wouldn’t trust someone for advice in the first place why would I listen to anything they have to say? Why should I trust their judgment over my own?

It seems a little cheesy to say, but this has been helping a lot with trying to be more self-assured. When someone asks me if I’m sure about something now all I say is, “I’m positive.” and trust myself above anyone else.

Destiny is currently enrolled in Columbia University's MFA Writing program. She is a national writer at Her Campus and the former editor-in-chief of Her Campus Rowan. She likes thrifting, romance novels, cooking shows, and can often be found binging documentaries.
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