The time is coming. Assignments are due, exams are coming and stress is increasing at an exponential rate. Chances are you have not gotten the sleep you need, properly eaten nutritious meals (no, coffee from Starbucks does not count) or moved your body in a while. Even though exams are important, you must remember that taking care of yourself should be your number one priority. Work hard, show your teachers what a boss you are, but never do so at the expense of your physical, mental and emotional health. Trust me: it’s never worth it.
I am what you could call an overachiever. I am involved in way too many clubs, try to get straight As, workout every day and never say no to invitations or outings. My perfectionist tendencies have led me to burnouts multiple times, which only causes more anxiety and stress. Being stressed makes you perform badly, and doing badly academically generates even more anxiety, therefore creating an endless cycle of worrying and stressing. My parents have always noticed my perfectionism and tell me frequently that no grade or achievement will ever be as important as my health. And just as my parents always tell me that, I want to remind you that as well.
It’s not worth it. It’s not worth it to cry over a bad exam grade. It’s not worth it to miss parties and events because you think you need to stay in to study. It’s not worth it to deprive your body of essential nutrients because you skipped breakfast or lunch to go to class. Yes, you are in college to learn, to do your best and to build the best future possible for yourself. But you are also in college to be happy and to become the best version of yourself.
This finals season, try to take it slow. Take breaks, schedule time to watch your favorite show or your comfort movie. Don’t forget to make delicious and healthy meals, or treat yourself to your favorite takeaways. Move your body, go for a walk with friends or attend a Zumba class. Take care of your mental health, and if you don’t do as well as you wished, don’t be hard on yourself. You did your best, and that’s all that truly matters. In the end, you are not going to remember the C- you got in Calculus in your sophomore year of college. You are going to remember your health, your happiness and the memories you made along the way. And, after all, that’s what really matters.