Non-Academic Productivity

As the semester begins to wrap up and finals season lurks in the distance, it is far too easy to get overly caught up in schoolwork. Exams, projects, labs, essays, homework, etc. can become all-consuming. Even worse, if you’re anything like me, grades and academic results can seem like a measure of self-worth. This is WRONG! Education is hugely important; no one is denying that. However, it simply is not the only responsibility we have in our lives. If our ONLY tasks throughout the week were to go to class, go home, and do homework and study, we would definitely see some improvements in our GPAs. Our schedules are A LOT busier than that though. Just because you aren’t ahead on all your work and getting perfect grades does not mean that you aren’t doing well in life. It can be hard to remember and recognize non-academic accomplishments, but I am writing this article to encourage you to do just that. 

You did your laundry? Good job! Ate a healthy meal? Went to the gym? Talked to or spent time with your family back home? That’s awesome! Going to bed early, practicing self-care, and quality time with friends should be valued as well. Don’t forget to give yourself credit for participating in jobs, internships, and volunteering, not to mention other campus clubs and organizations. Never forget the value of reading the news or a good book, or any other way to learn about a new topic outside of the classroom, with no grade attached. Many college students have significant, time-consuming responsibilities that inevitably divert time and effort away from school. Regardless, no one is perfect. 

This list could go on forever. The point is, our lives and ourselves are not defined by the little three-digit number on the top of our transcripts. Don’t let the class-homework-studying-repeat routine get you down. Only a small part of you is reflected in your classroom endeavors; there is so much more to your capabilities and successes. 

Here’s hoping for a great rest of the semester, whatever that means to you :)