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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Stony Brook chapter.

Extra-curriculars. Internships. Job. Applications. Midterms. Homeworks. College can become hectic and consuming with not even a second to breathe. There’s never a STOP button, but what’s even more terrifying is that when there is a stop, a lot of us don’t know how to enjoy it.

Going home for winter break taught me a lot of things, namely, how much I missed actual food and the comfort of my bed. All things I knew before, sure, but damn did I miss the warmth of my home. I was so excited to be with my family, ravenously eat delicious food, play catch up with my sleep, and just relax. But… that never happened.

As each day passed, I progressively found myself becoming bored and antsy, as if I was waiting for someone or something to shout at me to get me back into my routine. I felt on edge, just needing something to do, something to stress about, and the lack of nothing to stress about drove me to the brink of insanity. Strangely enough, I thought I would feel complete being home, but I never felt emptier. It was like I was missing something essential to me.

It’s common knowledge that the education system has conditioned every student to be intellectual risktakers who are agile and resilient. Stress has become a drug of mine and of my peers. I had friends blowing up my phone, texting about how they couldn’t wait for school because lounging around, even passing time with friends seemed to be a waste and they couldn’t shake the feeling they were meant to be doing something.​

I can still vividly remember coming back to my English class and speaking to a classmate who told me how comfortable she felt being back in her routine, where she was able to have something to stress about because she felt anxiety ridden the entire break. Quite like me, she was passionate about returning and well now, that same classmate is living her best life, thriving off of her momentum.

The drug to be and feel productive is potent, there’s nothing like the feeling of having done everything you needed to. For some of us, it’s a stimulant, giving us a high and drive that wasn’t existent before. For others, it’s a depressant, dousing everything in color with black and white until we’re left wondering where the life in everything went.

As with everything, there needs to be a balance. Many of us have forgotten to simply relish in ourselves and the simplicity of our lives. Always waiting for the next stressor or big thing to hit may seem exciting and invigorating, but truth be told, it is beyond exhausting.

But I’m being a hypocrite.

Even now, as I’m writing this, I’ve been sleep deprived for 3 days due to exams, assignments, and internship applications. But the overwhelming need to be productive won over me and so at 3:00 a.m. the clicking and clacking on the keyboard has begun. And behind the screen is me, complete insanity.

Productivity. Insanity. Which one are you?  


Gifs courtesy of giphy.com


Raifa Chowdhury is an undergraduate at Stony Brook University, originally from Brooklyn, New York. She is currently double majoring in English and Psychology; her passion is to pursue a career in writing and international law. In her spare time, Raifa looks for adventures by either getting lost in the streets of New York or her collection of books. She is a daydreamer of wonderlands and has the impulsive need to write poetry and stories whenever she can. You can always find her reading a novel or furiously typing on her laptop with iced coffee nearby.
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