It's Okay to be "Too Busy"

If your hobbies include stressing out until you combust into a gross mixture of tears and screams, guilt-filled pacing, a lack of sleep, human interaction, money and a genuine feeling other than emptiness, you are most likely a full-time student with no time for love, fun or meaningful interaction, like at all. Congratulations and welcome aboard the S.S. Mental Breakdown. We will be departing shortly.

Can you honestly answer the question, ‘what do you like to do for fun?’ without spinning off into full-panic mode, quickly realizing that you don’t even remember the last thing you did because it was “fun?” What is this “fun” everyone seems to be having? Huh?! Who has the time to be chasing around some elusive, unattainable concept while trying to successfully maintain a job, internship, extracurriculars and being a full-time student?! Because we sure as hell don’t.

Fun is for the wealthy. Downtime is for the people who already have their dream job. Meaningful relationships are for the fulfilled and hobbies are for those with less than three jobs. We are none of these.

A full-time, working student doesn’t have the time to go to your third cousin’s baby shower or on  a weekend getaway with the girls. Don’t even get us started on dating… We are sorry. We would love to drop all of our responsibilities and have “fun,” but we cannot. At least, not as often as we’d like.

Without working, we can’t afford to go to school. Without school, we can’t get a better job. Without an internship(or five), we don’t have enough experience to get an interview. Without extracurriculars, we can’t network and maximize our resumes’ whitespace. There cannot be one without the other. It’s a vicious, exhausing and flat out cruel cycle that is exactly the reason we will be investing early in eye cream.

Working on making our future lives better sometimes means that our present life has to suffer, a little. We have to put in the time and effort to make sure that our future selves will be supported, successful and happy. We shouldn’t feel guilty for having to turn down people and parties to get our homework done. Being responsible isn’t always fun, but it ensures our future happiness.

Take a deep breath and try to see the bigger picture. We aren't "throwing away our youth" by not partying our brains out every weekend, or turning down dates every now and again. You aren't going to look back at your life and regret missing going to brunch that Sunday instead of studying for your math midterm. It doesn't feel fair now that all your time is taken up by your adulting roles, but it's going to pay off in the end. Hang in there, pal. Think of it this way: the harder you study now, the more money you'll have in the future to hire a really great therapist. 

So, if you could, keep the “we never see you out anymore” comments to yourself, it would save us a lot of self-induced lectures on the ride home.

We feel guilty enough already for not being the greatest friend, daughter or student at the time being. Figuring out a way to balance all of the people in our lives and our responsibilities is the most stressful thing. We want to spend time with you, submit all our assignments on time and get eight hours of sleep too.

For the time being, please understand when we can’t make it to your brother’s birthday party or out to the bars or to spring break. We still want an invite, but please don't be too disappointed when we can't make it. Give us roughly four years and a bachelor’s degree later, and we will be the greatest friend ever. As for now, three weeks notice should be fine. Remember, distance makes the heart grow fonder...right?

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