Can you believe that CMU students are only a week away from final exams? I know, I can’t either. This year has been one of the craziest school years of my life. From the highest of highs to the lowest of lows and everything ordinary in between, I’ve managed to (almost) finish it.
I thought that I would share the three biggest lessons from my third year as a CMU student. **These are not in order of importance, rather an order of how I came up with them**
1. It’s okay to not be okay
As a conversation around mental health has begun to emerge, I’ve heard this phrase a lot. When I first heard this it didn’t resonate with me in any way. I was a relatively happy person, and there wasn’t a reason for me to not be okay. However, as I transitioned from studying abroad in Italy back to Mt. Pleasant for classes on campus, I fully began to realize this quote.
There was nothing wrong with me physically, I have family and friends who love me, and so much more to be thankful for. Even knowing all this, I still felt sad. Once I started to recognize what how I was feeling during my transition home, I began to accept it and work through my issues. Sometimes you just feel sad, and recognizing it is the first step. It didn’t cure my sadness overnight, but I was able to let myself recognize my sadness and do something about it.
2. Saying “no” isn’t a bad thing
This was one of the harder lessons I had to learn this year. I came back from Italy and tried to jump right back into all of my old clubs and organizations. On top of accepting a new job for the semester, I found myself juggling a workout schedule, work, school, and my extracurriculars. Most days I was at the gym before 7:30 am and on campus from 10 am to 6 or 7 at night. Now, I’m not sharing this for anyone to praise me or take pity on me. This schedule is what kept me busy and worked for me. I’m sharing this because if I wouldn’t have learned to let the guilt of the word “no” go, then I don’t think I would’ve survived this semester. I would’ve worked shifts or gone to meetings because I felt like I had to.
3. Find the good in every day
Okay now, this might not always be easy. I had some days where nothing could compare to studying abroad, and my whole day would seem pointless. Those thoughts might be some of the most toxic thoughts in life. No day is pointless, and there is always something to be thankful for whether it be your health or a beautiful sunrise. It’s okay to not be happy at a specific season in your life, but every season has a reason.
There you have it, folks, the top three things I learned this semester. Honestly, I could write a novel on all the lessons I’ve learned. This was one of the most pivotal times in my life. I’m getting ready to close the chapter of my third year and start another. Cheers to new seasons.
Krystal, With a “K”