Love Letter – I was an “Idiot” and a “Dumbass”

That’s exactly what I use to label myself in Junior High School and High School. 

I would call myself an “idiot” and a “dumbass” and laugh about it with my friends. I created this mindset that I was not able to learn and it stuck with me. It led to me not even trying to do my homework because I already thought it was too hard for me. It led to me not reading one book during those years because I would not understand any of it. It led to me not studying for my exams because I would not retain any of it. 

All of this led to me cheating through school and barely graduating. In my graduation class we had just over 800 students. My GPA ranking was around the 740s in my class. You can say it was not good at all.

I thought learning was impossible for me and that I would have to settle for whatever life through my way. I accepted the fact that my life would be mediocre.  

Luckily I joined the Marine Corps and they were able to tap into my mindset a little bit. When I completed my 4 years in the Marines, I knew I wanted to come back home and use the GI Bill (school benefit for Veterans).

But as I planned on signing up for school, all of my old thoughts began to resurface. I remember feeling terrified about school that I asked my best friend to fill out my school application for me. I thought the school application was too difficult to fill out. True story, you can ask my best friend Diego. 

Fast forward to 5 years later, I graduated with a Finance Degree from Texas A&M University. During those 5 years I earned only 3 B’s, 2 C’s and everything else was all A’s. You can say I made a complete 180. 

How did this happen? I became a studious person. 

I realized for me to be successful in school I had to become the people who are successful in school. This meant I had to do everything I avoided, feared and did not want to do. I had to do all of this on a consistent basis. 

Yes it sucked. Yes I wanted to quit. Yes I questioned myself. All of this went against what I had created in my mind and all the habits I had built.

But HELL YEAH it was worth it. And all of these new skills I acquired, I continue to utilize in my life because I enjoy them now. 

The point of my love letter this week is not to talk about my education history. It is to tell you that whatever it is you seek, you need to become to the person who seeks it. You need to become the person who is successful at it. 

Study these people. Learn from these people. Listen to these people.

You don’t become successful by sticking to your ways. You become successful by developing and becoming who it is you want to be. 

Regards,

Josh Melendez

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