While most parents and some students will tell you that there is more pressure on students today than there ever has been I am here to tell you that we do it to ourselves. Sure, there is a feeling that doing "more" is necessary for success, and of course colleges are looking for the most well rounded student out there but is it truly necessary for us to try and be a part of every activity out there? No. Again, as I have mentioned in my previous post I am a hypocrite and I am that student getting involved with as much as I can get my hands on, but is anyone putting a gun to my head? No. So I guess what I'm trying to say is the cliché, "do what you love". Life is too short to do things that stress you out for no good reason (except for school, that will probably stress you out but its mostly necessary so deal with it). For example, I do track - I LOVE track. Do I get stressed because of it? Of course. As an athlete of any level you often feel pressure to attain and maintain certain standards and reputations, when these standards seem to be infinitely out of reach it gets frustrating and stressful. That being said, when I step back I know that I can always say that the stress was worth it, that track truly does make me happy, that I always have a team to fall back on, and that track has given me more life skills than I could ever imagine. So find your "track", find something not that won't stress you out, but that when it inevitably does, it will be worth it. This being said, you may have more than one "track" in your life....go for it! Until you reach the point where you step back and realize "wow, this is most definitely not worth it", then do everything and anything you can that you love- but know when to stop. Surround yourself with people who will remind you why you participate in whatever activity it is and will try to stop you from doing whatever that is when you don't realize how unenjoyable it truly is for you (make sure those people will also stay friends with you when you tell them they are wrong countless times because only you can realize and make the decision to stop).
This being said: find something you can do besides your "track", as the hypocrite I am I really haven't found that yet, but I do recognize that I love John Green books and mugs full of orange blossom tea so when all else fails- you can find me in a corner reading with a mug of tea (approach cautiously). SO if you can't find some other activity to keep you occupied, at least find your "John Green and Tea" , because we all need to walk away from the things we love most sometimes especially when we're frustrated. Time away usually brings perspective and reason (and sometimes even makes you less stressed!), if you continue to be miserable- you might consider reevaluating your favorite activity. If you do make the decision to stay with that activity, please do us all a favor- do not be a chronic complainer. Of course we all complain, and of course there is always a point where we just feel like everyone and everything is against us. I promise you- we are not all out to get you, take this a your cue to step back and reflect a little....or curl up in your corner with your mug of tea. You will get through it and there are people that will help you always (and if you don't believe that, then come find me) but DO NOT complain all the time about every little thing in your life. I promise you that eventually those people will no longer want to help you, they might anyways, but just know- it is not an enjoyable task.
At this point of the year, stress level vary- high school students are submitting applications to college or catching up on the homework they've waited to do until the last two days of vacation, college students are in the middle of their luxuriously long break (either ready to get back to school or wishing they never have to return), and everyone else is either back to work, or on retirement, Granted, these are hugely stereotypes and I could be completely off base but the point is- we are all stressed at some point. Just because you are not stressed, does not mean that other people can't be stressed (students: just because we are stressed does not mean that our parents can't be stressed too....just remember that)- know that everyone is fighting their own battle and just try to be civil to everyone (even if you feel it quite impossible). So I guess if you take anything out of this I hope it is this: Do track and read John Green ....so , do what you love and then some. Oh, and be nice. Please just please be nice as much as humanly possible because the way I see it, there is nothing this world needs more than a bit more positivity.
A Duck Inspired