Winning Essay by Sydney H. from North Carolina attending University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Winning Essay by Sydney H. from North Carolina attending University of North Carolina at Charlotte

“If you train hard, you’ll not only be hard, you’ll be hard to beat.” (Herschel Walker). Walker wasn’t always the pro-football player that everyone knows him as. He wasn’t always strong and muscular. He didn’t come from a high-class city. He was bullied, taunted, laughed at, and looked down on. After being assaulted in middle school, he had enough. He wanted to stop being the shy kid who stayed inside during recess. He realized he needed to change his mindset. His greatest secret to his success was knowing his weaknesses.

Herschel Walker is a true example of the overused cliché; “The Man, The Myth, The Legend.” Walker has the mindset of a winner, the vision to see the best within him, and the dedication to succeed. Walker has inspired me to have confidence within myself and to not let anyone define me.

When I first entered high school, I didn’t like to speak to people I did not know, I was not friends with a lot of people, and the worst part was I let people walk over me. I first heard of Walker when I entered high school, when my teacher discussed his name in class. I realized his story sounded a lot like mine. I went home that night and googled him, knowing nothing about him. After an hour of reading his story I started to cry. I realized that I was going through some of the same things that Walker had and I didn’t even realize it until now. Walker’s experiences made me realize that I needed to know my weaknesses and stop making them define me as a person. The very next day I changed how I did things. I started to talk to my classmates that looked lonely. I sat with different people at lunch to meet new friends. But, more importantly I stopped letting people walk over me and run my life. I started to stand up for myself, as well as others. I gained the social skills and confidence to join sports teams and clubs at my high school. I was even named captain on my golf team because of my leadership. All of these accomplishments I have Walker to thank for. Without Walker coming into my life, I might still be the kid sitting in the back of the class with no future. I’m a changed person.

Walker’s inspiration has help me succeed in my proudest moments. I have him to thank for making me open my eyes and see the real, confident me. I realized I had to share his story with others. Walker’s true passion and confidence within himself has not only made him stronger, but his admirers stronger as well. I finally had the mindset of a winner, the vision to see the best, and gained the dedication to succeed.


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