The National Society of Leadership and Success
Building leaders who make a better world

Dawn Lee Clodfelter
High Point University

Who am I? Who are you? I think these questions are the most valuable questions in society, and we spend our whole lives trying to figure them out. Every day I learn something new, and I find in amazement that I am constantly growing. In high school I made the mistake of thinking I knew it all, and now I find myself trying to absorb as much knowledge as possible, and to never think I know enough.  I lived a very difficult life. I lived in an abusive home environment; my parents discouraged me from going to college, and to make matters worse I was made fun of because I couldn't afford the clothes others wore and because I had a physically noticeable eye muscle disorder. I learned through self-evaluation that I am a very ambitious person, and without the internal drive to make a difference, I would have never made it to college. I realized that even though I have a negative past, I did not have to let it dictate my life. 

I decided to go to college, I made good grades, and I was even voted president of the national psychology honor society (Psi Chi). You would think that becoming president of an organization would change me, but it didn't. I had the tools necessary to be a great president, but I didn't know how to use them. It wasn't until I was nominated for this honor society that I really flourished as a person. Like most college students, I thought that this honor society would be a great title to put on my resume. Like my attitude in high school, I made the mistake of thinking that I knew it all and that I couldn't possibly learn much more. I went to the required Leadership Training Day, and that is when something inside me changed. The words these people spoke gave me inspiration to learn more. I began attending the Success Networking T eam meetings, and I even began researching the leaders on the website. I couldn't believe that the leaders had come from backgrounds as severe and diverse as mine. These people were actually inspiring others, by not letting their past affect them and using it instead as a flame of hope. Their words gave me the motivation to do more, to be more, and to challenge myself.

This organization gave me the words of wisdom I needed, and the support to follow through with my goals. My goals for the future include becoming a clinical psychologist, and to be one of your motivational speakers so that I can inspire others the way this organization has inspired me. I am finally living my dream, and I know who I am. Dion Jordan said it best: "If you're not living your dream, whose dream are you living?? Thank you for changing my life!