Personal Narrative Essay: My Ambitions

“If you can dream it, you can achieve it!” I can recall seeing this exact saying displayed boldly across countless posters plastered on gymnasium walls and classroom bulletin boards as a child. Now that I’m older, I still look back on those posters with fondness and nostalgia–they probably didn’t do much to accomplish their goal of inspiring young students to set their sights on high aspirations at the time, although they were certainly memorable enough. One could say that these posters are a great example of encouraging ambition in young kids, but in my case, I didn’t need encouragement to develop an ambitious attitude; I’ve had big dreams for as long as I can remember.

Now, if there’s one question that is most asked by inquiring adults to young children, it’s probably, “what do you want to be when you grow up?” While there are a large variety of answers one could give, one of the least anticipated responses would be “an animal rights attorney,” which was my go-to career of choice at the age of eight to nine years old. This aspiration changed many times throughout the years, but regardless of what career I decided on, I always had a plan for exactly how I was going to get there. In the present day, my vocational goals continue to reflect my high ambition. As an incoming college senior, I am ecstatic to be one step closer to reaching my career goals.

Ambitions are an innately shared experience across humankind. Countless aspects of pop culture reference the subject, from hit songs like Bruno Mars and Travie McCoy’s “Billionaire” to blockbusters like “The Pursuit of Happyness,” and even theatrical sensations like Shakespeare’s “Macbeth.” With so many individuals familiar with this topic, I think most would define the term ambition as a strong desire to achieve something. While I certainly agree with this definition, I think ambition is something even more powerful than this message conveys. To me, ambition encompasses one’s desires, motivation, and inspiration to fulfill their biggest dreams. Without any ambitions, life has significantly less meaning, and I couldn’t imagine not having the drive to reach the goals that propel me every day. 

Meanwhile, my ambitions serve as a vital part of my success as a college student. I know of many former college students who discontinued their schooling after recognizing that their ambitions were leading them in a different direction. As a result, I have asked myself several times, “is it really worth all the time, energy, and money that I invest to reach my goals?” It would be much less time-consuming to switch my aspirations to a career track that doesn’t involve years of schooling, after all. However, my ambitions are so strong that I don’t think I could change them even if I wanted to. Because of this, I’m looking forward to all the things I have yet to accomplish, and I can’t wait to see where my ambitious attitude takes me next.


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