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Just a Moment

Just a Moment…


    As I walked out of my last class this afternoon, I glanced over my list of things to do before spring break. Papers, tests, study abroad applications, and regular assignments greeted me from my online calendar, amidst many other unsorted to-do tasks.

    Before I made it back to my dorm, my phone lit up with a message from a friend. For just a moment, I thought back to my list. With that thought, I realized something I should have considered earlier: how was I setting my priorities? Sure, there are benefits to following a strictly school and career-based calendar, but after another look at my neat little checkboxes, I realized I had no time set aside for myself. On paper, it appeared that my plan for the week was organized and productive. Yet I knew my habits, and I recognized that if I didn’t set aside time to live in the moment — to hang out with friends, to draw, to sit outside — the work I produced would suffer.

    I met up with my friend, catching up with her and meeting some other new friends in the process. When she left, I pulled out my book and decided to read outside rather than hunkering down in a quiet study space. I didn’t get as much reading done as I might have elsewhere, but I watched a spider craft its web and saw the bats come out as the sun went down — two things I haven’t seen since I was much younger.

    In this week before spring break, don’t forget to take time for yourself. I have to remind myself not to take too much time to relax — I still need to do the work — but spending thirty minutes alone outside, thirty minutes journaling, can make the work that you produce after your short break much more thoughtful and focused.



Anna Dolliver is a junior studying Chinese and English at the University of Texas at Austin. An aspiring novelist and teacher, you will often find her wandering the shelves of a library, reading outside, or writing in rooms filled with windows. She is currently studying abroad in Taiwan; you can read about her experience at her blog, www.talesoftaiwan.com.
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