Bryan Gonzalez Flores
Take it Easy
Pre-pandemic times, I was a person that treated myself like a machine. Wake up. Drive to school. Go to class. Drive back home. Sleep. Repeat. I know many students can relate. The popular narrative that is imposed on us by society tells us that as college students, we should have high grades and a concrete plan of what comes after graduation.
All of this can be very overwhelming, and it makes us fall victim to mindless routines that drain us of our satisfaction. While all of these things are important to accomplish during college, it's equally important to remember–you’re still young! As young adults, it's important to value the present and not stress out over things that have yet to happen.
As a first generation college student, I fell victim to ignoring my friends and family and focusing solely on school. I intentionally did this because I believed that participating in school clubs and activities would deviate me from being the first in my family to have a distinguished career. This perceived obligation of social avoidance hindered my career development because I unintentionally alienated myself from belonging to a community where I could grow as a person.
Now post-pandemic, I pushed myself to take part in MA and this initiative has allowed me to discover my love for talking and working with diverse groups of people. I feel fulfilled knowing that I belong to a community of like-minded, driven individuals. Steps I implemented to reach this balance were:
Planning out my days in advance in order to be as productive as possible while still having fun
Focusing on the present as opposed to stressing over the future
Viewing every social event as an opportunity to develop my personal character
Acknowledging that having fun is vital in stimulating creativity and personal growth
Don’t feel pressured to do everything right the first time. Don’t treat yourself as a machine that can’t break. Celebrate your accomplishments and acknowledge your failures with pride as they are the architects of your success. College should be thought of as an experience that is the gateway to discovering passions and interests as they come to you. Socialize with others to discover what fuels you and ignites a flame of genuine passion.