Saying "Yes" to Everything

The page is blank. Bare. Daring. Daunting. The cursor is a short, vertical and steady reminder of where I left off. The blink, blink, blink is rhythmic and agitating.


This is my first article and though I suppose it is neither custom nor appropriate I feel the need to express that fact. Whether to warn you of what’s to come or apologize for it.


Before I came to college, people often told me that it is a time of learning, growth and change. But they also warned that it can be quite loathsome. In my first few weeks, I was quick to make new friends, get comfortable with impromptu elevator conversations and even join clubs I never thought I would like. My first month was a whirlwind. I tried to remember the advice my sister gave me: “Say 'yes' to everything. Parties, midnight fast food runs, even spontaneous floor hopping. The best way to get involved is to say yes.” Now, this may sound extreme, but I think the point she was trying to get across is not to let fear hold me back. So as long as one does not take this advice too literally by doing something they may regret the next day, I thought it was a good plan for college. By the end of my first month I had had a lot of fun, met some great people and was in no way homesick.


However, as my second month rolled around I began feeling a bit lost. Although I had friends and joined clubs I began to feel restless. I come from a big family, and I started calling a different sibling everyday. We would talk for an hour and even if we both had to go I tried to keep them on the phone for as long as I could. I always had to be doing something.


I soon realized that I was having trouble being alone. Alone with my thoughts. Alone with my worries. Alone with myself.


Trying to always say yes while attempting to grow and learn requires one to take a step back. Rather than saying yes to everything, we should try saying yes to the right things. Things that will make us better people. We must make time for reflection and quiet. As the first semester closes in, what I have learned is the importance of being alone with myself: no phone, no textbook, no music. Just me. Through quiet prayer or the lines of a journal, I have been able to reflect: what do I want and why do I want it? How can I be the best version of myself? Although it is good to go out and join the community it is also imperative that we ask ourselves questions like these and take time to discover the answers.