Sophi Sanchez, Senior Editor

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What would you do if you were not afraid?

What kind of person would you become if there was no such thing as failure, no fear of other’s perception of you, no boundaries to transcend? What risks would you take? 

Our generation is afraid. We are afraid of the magic that lies within us. We are afraid to take risks, simply choosing to stay within the four walls that society has built for us. We do not lead; we follow. We dress the same, eat the same, compete for the best cars and work to make our Instagram profiles aesthetically pleasing…and for what? So that we can stay here, confined to these two square miles of bare nothingness, and impress others who don’t even care about us? 

The few that get to leave this town and explore, create, invent, learn, make mistakes, find new friends and new loves are envied so much so that jealousy evolves into resentment. Every so often, my elders utter a simple phrase, “I never had that chance”. The first few times I heard this, I didn’t really know what to say. I realized not everyone has parents like mine, who placed more value on experiences and knowledge than material possessions, who were never taught the value of taking risks and never being afraid of the unknown. 

Why are we so afraid of being great? Nothing great ever came out of playing it safe. Take it from me; I was never going to apply for KHOP. I was too scared of failing, too fearful of reading those words that translated into “we don’t want you.” Out of the twenty one people who interviewed, I venture to assume that I had the lowest ACT score out of all of them. The odds were stacked so highly against me that I felt myself quivering in their shadow. Yet, here I am, about to graduate high school with early acceptance into a medical school that is #44 in the nation. 

I ask again: what would you do if you were not afraid? Would you try that sushi place that you’re scared you’re going to hate? Would you quit your job and move to India for a year to find yourself? Would you apply to Harvard? Yale? Princeton? Fear is scary. It’s full of doubt and darkness. You can let it drive you to success or you can let it consume you. The choice is yours. 

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