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I think one of the things we struggle with the most as human beings is wanting control. We desire to control everything in our situations so much that we end up upsetting ourselves and ruining our own day. The reality of life is that we do not have control over much. The only thing that we are really able to control is ourselves and how we react and perceive what happens to us. That’s not to say that shitty things don’t happen, they definitely still do, but the goal is to not let those obstacles have the power to stop you from continuing. 

I will admit that I am not the kindest person when I’m behind the wheel. Driving in traffic definitely does not show me in my best moments (I swear everyone else is the problem, not me). However, lately, I have been trying to take these inconveniences and recognize them as a moment to pause. I can’t make the cars move any faster or teleport myself, therefore it is out of my control. Instead, I can take control of what I choose to do during those few minutes of stillness. I can look at the scenery around me. I can take a second to breathe and be in a moment of tranquility. I can turn up the music and enjoy it before the rest of my drive is up. There are so many things I can do that are beneficial to myself and my peace, but sitting there and getting upset because we aren’t moving isn’t going to do anything good for me. 

Being a creature of habit, there are a few spots on campus that I claim as mine. However, going to such a big school means that there will be people everywhere. Even in my seat that isn’t my seat. At first, I’m always a little bummed to have to retreat from my comfort zone, but then I realize it means I get to try somewhere new. The other day I had a great time sitting in the lower courtyard of the library reading in between classes. The day before that I sat on a bench to the side of Hamp enjoying the sun and completing some work. It’s not always in the picture for me to rearrange the premade schedule in my head, but it’s more enjoyable to find reasons to be happy about it than to sit and sulk. 

What I’m really trying to say is why would we spend our time moping over things we are powerless over when we could just choose to enjoy the fact that it has created a new opportunity for us. I know it isn’t always ideal, but it doesn’t matter because we have no say. We must simply continue. And personally, I choose to enjoy the journey.

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Danica Shores

U Mass Amherst '24

Danica Shores is from the small town of Sandwich, Massachusetts located on Cape Cod. She has grown up with with a loving mother, 3 siblings, many cats, two turtles, and a bird. Her interests include yoga, self care, poetry, and taking long walks. Currently Danica is studying as a double psychology and journalism at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. While she is not quite sure where she sees herself in the future she looks forward to helping others of all kinds.
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