As many of you probably know, my college schedule for the past two years has been anything but calm. Simply put, most of my days involve a multitude of sticky notes and lists about meetings, tasks, appointment times, and other to-do list items. My own definition of what it means to be busy has changed significantly since high school, but with that my conception of ‘busyness’ has also changed.
In high school being busy seemed to be the norm. If you weren’t taking a full courseload, participating in a wide array of extracurriculars, and pursuing some sort of passion or interest then you simply weren’t doing enough. Having a full schedule started to become more of a competitive affair, and something that I had come to accept.
After arriving at college, however, things started to change. The activities and classes that people chose to pursue related directly to their passions and interests, and they didn’t add anything extra to the mix. I remember being startled at the bedtimes for some of the older college students during my first year (and I have now become one of those older students), wondering how it was possible for them to have any energy by the time the day was over.
There are many instances in which people will ask me how I manage to stay on top of all that I am doing, and after three full semesters I have come to understand my secret: passion. This might seem odd for some, and simple for others, but it has been what has kept me motivated to engage with all of my college activities. I have been able to study what I truly love while in college (which is something that I am very grateful for), and learn about new interests and passions along the way.
Even though I am taking quite a few classes, have a few jobs, and am involved in a few organizations, I absolutely love everything that I do. As I have written about recently, throughout my time in college I have been increasingly focused on living intentionally. I have put all of my energy towards things that I know I love, and words cannot describe what has come from living in this way.
If you have ever done something that you truly love, you may be familiar with the rush of joy, the pure happiness, and the sense of fulfillment that you receive from pursuing your passions. This in of itself has motivated me despite the long days and occasional bouts of overwhelm that coincide with this state of ‘busyness’.
Of course my schedule wasn’t always like this, and I had to reflect about what I needed out of life before finding the perfect one. In my own life I discovered that I need a sense of community (which I have found through classes, jobs, campus groups, and off-campus groups), wellness-centered activities (such as going to the gym, doing yoga after a long day, and eating well throughout the day), and time to process all that I am experiencing each day. I have built communities both on and offline, and have stepped out of my comfort zone to embrace new experiences in hopes that I will expand my interests.
If you’re feeling stuck about where you are, or if you love to be busy but find it difficult to keep momentum going, reflecting on what you truly love to do might be a valuable way to reshape your schedule. Thinking about how your passions can match your needs, and adding as many fulfilling activities that you can manage to fit can change how you go about your day-to-day life. Embracing change and looking for ways to bring your passions into all that you do will make your work feel refreshing and fulfilling.
I hope you enjoyed this week’s post! I felt inspired to write about how my conception of ‘busyness’ has changed after thinking about what I am grateful for in each day. Through this reflection I was able to realize that my extra energy stemmed from my pursuit of my passions, and I wanted to share with you how that journey has shaped how I go about each day. 🙂