How A New Friend Helped Me Redeem Myself In My Career

Photo: Dean Drobot / Shutterstock
two business men walking together

By Louis Scarantino

My life has been a great journey so far. I’m happy with how I’ve grown as a speaker and a writer.

I owe my successes to so many people, but one in particular inspired my path and helped me redeem myself after a loss.

I’m part of a public speaking organization called Toastmasters, and my journey with Toastmasters indirectly led me to my dreams. I joined Toastmasters to redeem myself in my advocacy career.

It took a lot of courage to finally start opening up about my struggles after years of hiding them.

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Everyone is born with a gift. I first learned I had a gift on my 21st birthday.

That day, my sister told me I was a good writer. I told her I would become a writer one day, but I never pursued writing until I went to Las Vegas and came home a changed man forever.

As soon as I got home from Vegas, I sat down and wrote a book, even though I had no experience with writing. It sat on my computer for years, and I never intended to publish it.

After I started getting articles published, I decided to publish my book. I worked tirelessly on my book and hoped it’d become a bestseller. However, the site took down my first book a couple of months later due to a dispute about content.

I was miserable, angry, and upset for months about my book, and I quit writing. I felt I failed my family and my friends but, most importantly, myself.

My struggle with my book landed me in the hospital for my mental health. Being in the hospital was traumatizing and frightening. I was cut off from everyone and everything I loved, and I cried and cried.

All I wanted was to go home.

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I had had enough. After I came home, I decided I was done writing. But, after joining Toastmasters and writing a couple of speeches, I started to feel good about myself again.

I found it sad that I had given up something I loved after one bad experience. Everyone I knew felt the same way, too.

My return to writing led me to a woman named Kelly. She is one of the smartest and most influential people I’ve ever met in my entire life. Kelly brings me and her other friends so much joy.

She started following my writing. Kelly ended up becoming a fellow writing contributor and dear friend.

She and Toastmasters inspired me to try writing again. Since then, I have grown my writing career, which has reminded me of how talented I truly am.

Thanks to my friend’s support and guidance, I’ve written for several publications, spoken at many events, and even auditioned for a TV show.

A failed book, a series of hospital visits, and an incredible woman’s encouragement motivated me to redeem myself.

This woman helped me see what I already knew: some way, somehow, I am capable of being a writer. She taught me that it just takes courage and inspiration to find yourself again.

One failure doesn’t define you. If you really want something, keep trying for it. Don’t ever give up on your dreams.

The support you find along your journey will always help give you the opportunity to redeem yourself.

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Louis Scarantino is an author and writer who focuses on love, pop culture, and mental health topics. Learn more about his causes on his author profile.

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This article was originally published at Unwritten. Reprinted with permission from the author.