In last weeks blog post I touched a little bit on the concept of ‘age is no barrier.’ I decided to take this message and write a letter to young people of the world explaining why this is so true…
Dear Young People,
I wanted to write you a little message regarding the topic of achieving things when you’re young. I know you’re probably busy like everyone else, but this is a very important concept for young people to realise.
I have always been a very determined person with big dreams for myself. I am always coming up with a new idea or project I can work towards achieving, whether it’s interviewing someone, writing one of these blog posts or being creative and planning something that will probably never come to life. Even though some of my projects and plans don’t work out or eventuate, I still know I’ve tried.
This year has been full of projects for me, particularly numerous interviews I’ve done and articles I’ve written. Just this week, as some of you may know, I interviewed Peter Hitchener, one of the most well-respected members of the Australian news industry. All the projects I complete remind me of what can be done and that being 14, like myself, isn’t a barrier.
Earlier in the year, I received a negative response from someone regarding an article I had written. I hadn’t experienced this type of feedback before. An adult messaged me and said my article wasn’t factual, which was definitely a shock as I was 100% sure that what I had written was correct, and I still believe that to this day. Another thing that this person commented was, “great to see young journalists giving it a go.” The statement was a little hurtful as I wasn’t just “giving it a go,” I was putting everything I had into that article. Just because I was a teenager I felt I was being dismissed and not taken seriously.
Since I’ve received that message I’ve done a lot of reflecting and it’s become clearer to me that I can’t allow my age to affect what I’m producing and publishing. When I write an article, blog post or even an email, I am writing it with the hope it will be read in the same way someone would read adults writing. I know sometimes this is not the case, I am positive that many emails I send don’t get replies because I state that I’m a teenager. It gets annoying but I’ve come to expect it as I understand the stereotype that sits with teenagers.
I wanted to conclude my letter by reinforcing the importance of taking no (or no reply) for an answer because of your age. I find it ridiculous that one’s age is treated as such a big thing for some individuals and organisations. I have found that there is only a small majority of this kind of people/companies that ignore or choose not to associate with young people, but don’t let this deter you. There are many ways you can get your project, dream or plan underway and I have found adults that will help you no matter your years alive. If you persist and keep fighting, you’ll be heard, helped and guided on the journey of life, so don’t give up!