This quarter I have greatly benefited from my study group and office hours to make my education richer and engaging. This would not have been possible if I did not embrace being uncomfortable when actively seeking help.
Starting with the first week of the class, I made the effort to keep my camera on despite being the only one besides my professor in a lecture of over 30 students. When attending office hours and discussion in the first and second week, I messaged other engaged students to gather contact information and establish weekly zoom calls to review our homework. I believe being consistently present and often asking questions demonstrated my will to thrive in this class and made my classmates more willing to engage with me.
If I had not done this work within the first two weeks, I would have been less inclined to reach out further into the quarter, so forming the habit early was vital to my success.
To get to this point, I have had to battle with myself and imposter syndrome. Having always struggled in school, these years of failures have often left me with a lot of limiting beliefs about my capabilities. These beliefs often made me less inclined to engage with others as I did not feel like an equal to my peers.
I have had to learn to acknowledge and gradually remove the power from these beliefs to uncomfortably expose my vulnerabilities and receive help from others. As a result, not only have I greatly benefited from this experience, but my peers have shared their gratitude with me for taking charge in creating a supportive learning community.
I have received a lot of help and guidance in my academic journey, so it is crazy to believe that I have the tools and knowledge to currently help empower others as well.