A young 18 year old woman, with the whole world ahead of her, had just finished her freshman year of college. Summer jobs were being looked for, and plans being made, but little did she know all of that would change before she could prepare. While her friends were embarking on their summer plans, this young woman was going in and out of hospitals, enduring unexpected medical procedures, while permanently losing her eyesight. A summer of possibility quickly turned into one of hopelessness.
That fall, instead of returning to school, the young woman was recuperating and getting accustomed to her new lifestyle, as a blind individual. The now 19 year old, had some critical thinking to do about her life. The young woman had two options, to give into hopelessness or continue to walk the talk, by focusing on ability rather than disability. The young woman chose the latter option by taking one step at a time. Specifically, here is how she did it…

Select- The young woman selected a goal to move towards, which for her, was returning to school.
Transform- After the young woman had a goal in mind, she transformed it into smaller, manageable steps. For example, she and her family researched schools, narrowed down the choices, attained applications, and then applied. When establishing steps to take towards your main goal, it helps to have a deadline. For the young woman, her deadline was the cutoff period for the following school year’s applications. When considering the deadline, also think about the external factors that can unexpectedly alter your timeline. This allows a person to be prepared and not thrown off course.
Encouragement- When accomplishing any type of goal, it is important to have positive reinforcement cheering for you. The young woman had God, her family, and friends in her corner as she tackled her goal. However, one thing the young woman did not do, which is important, and would have been beneficial, is to directly encourage herself. It is good to have people say positive things about you, but you must believe in yourself too! Saying “I can” every morning will help in the process of moving forward. The more encouragement a person has behind them, the more likely they are to accomplish their goal.
Perform- Now that the young woman had accomplished all of the above, she was ready to carry out her goal; returning to school. She found herself repeating all of the four steps throughout the process. Ultimately, she ended up receiving her degree.

The young woman described in this story was me. I am living proof that when you set your mind to it, anything is possible. The trick is goal setting. So, think of something that you want to do, and STEP towards it!

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