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The Story of.....the Perils of Being an Overachiever

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We  had all gathered around the dining table, it was about 8 in the morning. My dad started calculating the percentage while my mother and sister frantically asked "did she do it?" Before he could say anything, I could sense the sinking feeling at the pit of my stomach, I hadn't done it. I hadn't achieved what I had been working for, for 2 whole years. I hadn't topped my year, like everyone thought I would.
I had always been an overachiever. It was the disadvantage to being the baby of the family. You constantly felt you had to prove yourself to measure up against the illustrious older members of the family. It was also the disadvantage to being a perfectionist. Everything you had to do had to be JUST perfect.


In the Indian curriculum, you have a choice between three streams of subjects to concentrate on. My love for English and the social sciences meant that the humanities was my first choice. My parents were supportive as long as I promised to excel in whateve…