Post-Recruitment Recovery

Post-Recruitment Recovery

    Last week, I served as a Rho Gamma for my university’s Greek formal fall recruitment. It was an incredible opportunity for me to get to know more women on campus, and I got to help new members figure out what they wanted out of Greek life--but it was also the most exhausting weekend I’ve had in school thus far. Every moment from Friday evening to Sunday night was full of enough bright-eyed questions, platform sandals, name tags, and whispers through my headset to make me more stressed and sick than I thought was possible in the very first few weeks of school. And to make matters worse, I had my first two papers and a mountain of make-up work hanging in the balance, sitting there in the back of my mind, reminding me of just how little I had gotten done in the moments in between the chaos of recruitment.

    If your school’s recruitment was anything like mine, I know how you’re feeling right now. Tired, overwhelmed, and probably a little sniffly--it can be emotional to have new members cry--and I want you to know that recovery is on the way. It took me a solid week of working nights and pushing myself to get there, but I’m slowly starting to adjust back to normal. Here are a few things that I learned to do that helped me handle the stress, the blood, the sweat, and the (many) tears of recruitment.

    ONE: Do your homework. It hurts to hear sometimes, but self-care isn’t all bubble baths and sleeping in. Sometimes, when the pressure is high and the sleep is low, the best thing you can do for yourself as a college student is to push forward and get to work. I found that by avoiding procrastination and working steadily on my assignments, I was able to slowly but surely revive my studying skills and stay on top of my other responsibilities, too. More than anything, school comes first in college, and while that truth can sometimes be exhausting, it’s also centering to know that your commitment to your classes gets to come before anything else. Even if you are the president/recruitment chair/rho gamma of the century, you’re still in school to learn, and by putting your work first, you can make the space to put yourself first, too.

    TWO: Cancel your plans. Seriously. After recruitment was finished, I was totally spent. I think the very best thing I did for myself was be honest with my friends and tell them when I had to cancel our plans to take care of myself. As someone who pretty much says yes to any plans or opportunities (for example, writing for Her Campus), I can find it difficult to say no or cancel something, especially if it was something I was excited about. But, no matter how fun going to Disneyland or roller skating with my sorority might have been, those activities would have only sapped my energy and made my time management all the more strenuous. So instead, I recommend that if you can give yourself time, even a little, to sleep, to eat, or to reflect, take it, even if it means you miss out on something fun. Odds are, if it’s meant to be, the fun will still be there when you’re ready to enjoy it.

    THREE: Reach out to your friends. Before and during fall recruitment, I wasn’t allowed to talk to my friends in Greek life. That meant that I spent the first few weeks being pretty lonely. So, when recruitment was finally over, I tried hard to make concrete plans with at least a few of the people I hadn’t connected with since last semester. It gave me something to look forward to after all of the craziness of the process was over and helped me adjust back into my normal work/life/social balance. If you have the chance, shooting a friend a text to meet for coffee, for studying, or even for a fun movie night can actually be a big help in readjusting back to a normal routine, hopefully, a routine that gives you great joy.

    Recruitment is a whirlwind that often feels like it takes more than it gives... But, when it’s all over, the bids are out, and the pledge classes have settled, I hope you can do those little things for yourself that can help you get back to normal again. I know that it helped me to take moments to work, rest, and reach out.