Taking Time for Yourself

With school entering the seventh week of classes, it’s easy to get lost in daily shuffle of college life. This week, I found myself constantly exhausted and stressed out about everything. I would stay up late to do homework and study, feel tired and unproductive, get mad at myself for feeling like that, accomplish nothing in the time that I stayed up, go to bed at 3am, and oversleep for my 8:30 class.

In all honesty, I didn’t expect to burn out so quickly. It’d barely been a month, and I already felt like the zombie I was back in my first term of senior year in high school. How was I going to make it through four years of living like this?

 Yesterday, I had a talk with my RA about it. He helped me realize that as students, we often forget that we are also humans with basic needs. The idea of surrounding yourself with schoolwork is one that is admired. We take pride in being stressed, and we quantitatively measure how stressed we are through how many quizzes we have, or assignments that are due, or exams to study for, because in our minds, that’s what it means to be a good student. Good students are resilient, devoted, unbreakable. They push through the sludge of exhaustion and triumph at the end. They don’t get caught in the quicksand. But that’s not what being a student should be like. The truth is, not everyone can be the “good student” that this college culture promotes. We should allow ourselves to be humans first, ones who get stressed and frustrated with work and not get mad at ourselves when we can’t be the superhuman student that studies 24/7.

So take time for yourself today to relax, to sleep, or to do nothing, and don’t feel bad about it. This is the other side of what it means to be a student that we rarely get to see.