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Author: Sports Prefect, Isabella of Year 12
Improvement is a small word with lots of meaning. When you google inspiring quotes you’ve got a large variety to choose from, and as cliché as it is, I’m going to start my speech with one.
It’s not how good you are but rather how good you wish to be.
As a young girl I often fell into the trap of measuring my self-worth by the score I got on a test, the way I played in a game or my finishing place in a race. But as I’ve gotten older, and a whole lot wiser, I’ve realised that improvement, and the journey towards it, is ultimately the greatest success you can achieve.
Success doesn’t happen overnight, and this journey of improvement is one that you will often complete many times in your life. While some people may think being the ‘most improved’ is less prestigious than ‘most outstanding’, I strongly disagree. Both are worthy of celebration and acknowledgement – and equal recognition.
Aiming for improvement is so much more worthwhile than aiming for or being the best. It is something in which anyone, if they put their mind to, can achieve. It may seem at times that you have tried everything, given it your best go, and yet not achieved what you set out to accomplish. It is important that you stop, and reflect on what you have actually already accomplished and achieved.
While I still sometimes fall into the trap myself, I believe you should never judge yourself in comparison to others. Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses, and you must know that in yourself, in your own heart and in your own mind, you have ultimately achieved success for you and yourself only. The measure of improvement is personal, and a process which takes time and effort. It is a choice you must make for yourself. No one else can make it for you.
We are lucky at Wenona to have teachers, coaches, captains, student leaders and peers who are all the more than willing to help you improve. Being able to compete with a willingness to learn, team spirit, positive encouragement, sportsmanship and humility is an achievement in itself, and is something I believe should be celebrated more often. Everyone, no matter your skill, competence or ability, can achieve improvement in any area, whether that’s sport, music, academics, in your own everyday life or to be faster, more involved in school or kinder to others.
The girls you see today, and the incredible achievements they have made in regards to their improvement, should be celebrated and acknowledged. I also want to give my congratulations to not only these girls, but also those who have achieved something as a result on continuous self-improvement.
Improvement can be a hard thing, and it takes time and persistence to achieve. Whether it be this year, this term, this week or even today. If you put your mind to something, it can often be achieved. And while this message is not a relevant at the end of term, I hope is something that you can improve and work towards not only in the remainder of the year but also something that you continuously strive for in all aspects of your life.