“Show don’t tell” is certainly more important for literary fiction than genre fiction like fantasy, but if you read really good writers like George RR Martin you’ll see they do very little telling. Still, I think we overuse the saying “show don’t tell.” It’s all about creating drama right? What “telling” usually does is that it removes all the drama, but if you can tell without oversharing, you should be fine. And after all, often showing ruins the story as much or more than telling!
“Show, don’t tell” is a simple way to remind yourself that an essay should give the admissions committee a detailed glimpse into your life, ideally by sharing things that have actually happened to you. You can do this by describing events and moments that capture something important about yourself. Don’t simply tell readers what you deem important; show them a scene that illustrates that aspect of your life, and allow them to draw the conclusion on their own. Doing so will yield an extremely effective and memorable piece of admission writing.