My underdog story and why I'm fine being an underdog now

in life •  10 months ago



I will never forget this word.

Back in my elementary days, I entered a spelling bee contest at our school. This was the word given to be spelled correctly during the final round. There were only three of us left and I had an opportunity to beat the other two contestants and win the gold medal for our class assuming I get it right and they get it wrong.

As I was starting to write down the correct spelling of the word on a piece of small pen board on my desk, I stopped. I looked straight up at the crowd and I could see my classmates proud of me for making it that far. Pushed with confidence and happiness from seeing their faces, I start to write down the letters slowly:


Hold on a minute! Let's build up the suspense a little bit shall we? Before I reveal to you if I won that contest or not, let me tell you first what inspired me to enter that spelling bee contest in the first place and why I call this my underdog story.

My early days as a kid

Growing up as a kid, I had a unique fascination with words. When I'm at home, one of my hobbies was to go over and open up our old dictionary and look at different words and their meanings. I don't know why I was like that, but I swear I got a kick out of it.


In our school, we are divided into different sections based on our "intellect". Those deemed to be intellectually superior based on their grades the previous year are put into section A. While the rest are assigned in sections B, C, and so on and so forth in no specific order. We had 5 sections all in all and I belonged to section D. In our school if you belong to a section that is not A, you are considered an "average" student.

Every year our school holds a spelling bee contest and every time a winner is announced, it is always from section A. 5 students are to be selected from every section to represent their class for that contest.

My reason to join the contest

I was a rather shy kid in school back then. That kid you see at the back of the class, all silent and minding his own business? Yes, that's a good way to describe me back then. But even though I was shy, I was a competitive kid.

So when my teacher was handpicking students from our class to join the spelling bee, I volunteered myself without hesitation. While my classmates were hesitant to join knowing only the section A students will win it all, I was out on a mission. I wanted to prove something. That even though we're not from section A, anyone has a shot at winning the contest regardless of their grades or "intellect". I got selected and I prepared long and hard in the 3 weeks leading up to the event.

The day of the contest

The contest started out with 25 participants. I remember advancing to the deeper rounds while my classmates didn't survive past the second round. Eventually I and two other students from section A were left to slug it out in the final round. The final round was a do-or-die matter, meaning if you make one wrong spelling of a word, you're out of the game for good. No ifs and buts.

It was a tense and exciting atmosphere, no doubt. We got into a deadlock for about 5 times until the word "Chlorofluorocarbon" was given. I remember hesitating to write down the spelling as I was not familiar with the word. Then after a few seconds or so of thinking, I wrote down:


I spelled it wrong. I didn't know there was supposed to be a letter "U" in it and with that, I lost from the competition and only got 3rd place. My classmates and friends were very supportive of me and they stood up and gave me an applause before I went down the stage. I recall being happy with my result even though I didn't get first place. I was proud that I was able to go toe-to-toe with those students from section A and gave them a run for their money. And I was able to prove a lot of people wrong at school that day that regardless of your grades or "status" or "intellect", if you put your mind and effort into something, you can achieve success.

Seeing my family proud of me when I went home that night clutching the bronze medal in my hand was definitely icing on the cake.

How that experience relates to my time here and my message to others

This life story of mine goes out to all my fellow "minnows" or should I say "underdogs" in this community who are struggling to find their place here or are frustrated with their progress and I hope this will serve as an inspiration to you guys.

I'm a minnow myself and I'm fine with that. I love being an underdog and I don't let my follower count or post payout amount deter me from making a difference here. It doesn't matter if others are more popular or doing better than us. Keep in mind that we are all unique and we all have different strengths or passions so figure out what you can give and contribute to this community and take advantage of that.

I, for example, am not that good when it comes to making blogs but I'm good at making personal relationships with people and making connections so I engage with a lot of people in chat rooms and give comments on people's posts.

Remember that most people here was once a minnow or underdog when they started out. It's what they did along the way that resulted to where they are now. So to all the struggling and frustrated underdogs here, I say just hang in there and keep going and perhaps someday we will be able to stand tall amongst the "giants" or "whales" in this community. And if ever there are times where you're in doubt of yourself, always keep the following quote in mind:


Do you have an underdog story you would like to share with us? Are you fine with being an underdog at some point in your life?

I would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment below.

If you find this piece useful, don't forget to upvote and resteem.

Follow me @andywong31

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Amazing post Andy and one of us has their journey and it's not good to compare yourself to others and track your progress with theirs.

Their journey may be different, they may have talent that is different than yours, the way their reputation will rise will be different.

Not exactly an underdog story but more of a hubris because when I started I compared myself to other people and thought I wrote with some degree of talent. I am so used to some people saying I move them with my words. I am not the most technical because I write emotionally.
In a way that is what I think it my words connect to the emotion of a person. Yet in my hubris I couldn't understand why people here were not responding and they were responding more to simpler stories of selfies, what they ate for lunch to their musing of their lackluster lives. That was my mistake I underestimated the underdog.

I have been humbled then. I have changed the way I see how people write here. Then I saw those that towered over me in skill and technique and yet there where humble.

My hubris is my downfall. Now I want to begin my writing story respecting all in the way that those kids from section A gave their respect to you when you gave them a run for their money.

P.s how do you handle those that leave messages to look at me without leaving any semblance of reading your post... Sigh.


Thanks for sharing your story bro. Yeah it pays to be humble. I find that regardless of how 'good' we think we are, we can always learn a thing or two from others even if we think we are 'better' than them. I like to treat everyone as my equal regardless of status or achievements. And through that i am able to gain friends and respect from people. Being grounded and humble is a great character one can have in my opinion. Appreciate you reading my post! 😀


It was to say a humbling experience matter how good we are their is always someone better nd keeping yourself open and humble makes it easier to learn from others.


Spot on! I like your mindset! Its always good to be humble and open! 😀

Everybody has something they look back on and say "dammit, if only I had.....".
But the lessons you learn in those moments are what count I suppose. Keep going!


yeah it definitely is what counts! thanks for dropping by my friend! see you around! :)


For sure!

Andy am really inspired and I will like to let the whole community know that Andy is referring to me @gimba.he has been giving me advice all this days. Am resteeming this post.


thank you my man! :)

The underdogs always have the best stories. (especially when they win)
Being an underdog my whole life has turned out to be a huge blessing. Because when I win, people think.. damn, he was right all along.


yeah its very rewarding when we're able to prove people wrong in the end, thats why i love the role of an underdog! hehe :)


I am following you now Andy. Thanks for the kindness and great content


Appreciate the follow man! 😀

Really inspiring post, Andy!

I ‘changed paths’ in my life many times, in some aspects I really grew and in others I walked away. But those things I walked away from weren’t really aligned with my truth.


thanks for sharing man! and appreciate you dropping by! :)

I, for example, am not that good when it comes to making blogs but I'm good at making personal relationships with people and making connections so I engage with a lot of people in chat rooms and give comments on people's posts.

This is very true, I noticed it yesterday when I checked your blog. No much more posts, no much earnings, but your arms are wide enough to help newbies in the promo-steem channel. You have an awesome personality. Lol, being an underdog is fun, I don't think I have any story to tell


thank you so much for the compliment jeline! it means a lot! yeah being an underdog is fun especially if you get to prove others wrong in the end! :)


My pleasure, yeah right

see your post it attrack my attention.. much motivated story ...i just want to say that life is an opportunity's darks it's good tobe dark because the only heart which try to find brightness in the darkness ...awesome


yeah i agree with your thought man! :)

Wow, this is great, I'm going to be sharing my own underdog story. Keep up with the great work you're doing sir. It's been great knowing you.


you too man! i would love to hear your underdog story someday! see you around bro! :)

You are one of the most inspiring persons I look up to on this platform and I'll urge everyone to read this article, it's really motivating and encouraging. Thanks my friend... 👍👍


such sweet words my friend! i really appreciate having you as my friend! thanks for dropping by! :)


It's always a pleasure and an honor... God bless you

great post Andy!!! And how horrible that your school divided people in sections according to their intellect, WTF!!!! Everyone is smart in their own way, I don't think that anyone can compare 2 people in terms of intelligence..maybe just in terms of performance in a certain field. But as the saying goes...if you judge a fish by his ability to climb a tree, he will spend his life thinking he's a loser.


i love that quote! yeah our school system kinda sucks haha but yeah i proved them wrong that i can hang with the 'best' of them even if im not from a 'superior' group.

I'm visiting your blog from your comment on my penguin post 😬 I love this post, what a great story, and I love how as a child you took a positive meaning from the experience. Sign of a strong and good character 😋 Good lesson and advice for all of us here!


Thank you for dropping by here! Really appreciate it! 😀

So inspiring! You were the HERO that day, I can tell. All the struggle and pain you take, that makes you even more stronger.


Hehe yeah i was. Thanks for the comment bro! 😀

I just connected with Andy in chat and he took the time to give me some great advice. Really nice guy apart from the awesome work here. Up voted and following.
Cheers mate,


thank you for the compliment bro! great to know you! :)

A great word of encouragement for us getting started on the platform. We will grow.



grow we definitely will! thank you for reading my post! appreciate it! :)

Wow, great words. Very inspiring! Thank you.


youre welcome!

Great post! Take a cursory look at @edet1

Amazing post Andy


thank you agyapong! appreciate it so much! :)

amazing post @andywong31
if you can visit to my post


thank you and appreciate you reading my post! :)