As I wrap up the semester, I am in a state of reflection. I want to dedicate this post to the 5 major lessons that I learned and (reinforced) in my first year here at University.
1. Allow yourself to have your own dreams and chase them.
While you're here in this life, it's important never loose sight of your dream and its' accompanying vision. Yes, we often become consumed with work, school, friends and any other activities that fill up our daily planner entries. As easy as it is to add another appointment into our blocks, it is just as important to schedule the time and the opportunities that allow you exposure into your dreams. If you want to work with children and education, pick up that volunteer opportunity at the local elementary school. If you see yourself as a professional boxer, get involved with the local organization. If you see yourself as a Pokémon catcher, you better get yourself in touch with some people at Nintendo. Do ya get my point? Tend to your current demands, but also start the investments for your dreams.
2. Don't put yourself through anything that doesn't bring joy (not happiness), or satisfaction.
This will later tie into the next bulletin point about knowing your worth. But very simply, if it does not bring you satisfaction or joy in the situation, it is not worth your time and investment. Now, I added in parenthesis, not happiness because I understand that through life you will experience some moments that make you absolutely miserable and regret any decisions that led you to that point. Experiences like those are what take away from ones' happiness, in the sense that happiness is based on happenings. Example given, I had a calculus class this previous semester that I absolutely dreaded attending. The lecture was too big, the teacher went entirely too fast and the TA didn't add to my comprehension. Would I choose to drop that course simply because it made me unhappy? no. I understood the importance of the course, as it was a pre-requisite in order to pursue what I really love, economics and public policy. It surely didn't make me happy, but it brought me joy in knowing that I was that much closer to my future in policy. But if something doesn't bring you joy, then you have no reason to partake in such. I hope that cleared that up. Frankly, know what you are worth and don't settle for experiences that are subpar.
3. Know your worth.
I am so blessed to have been given such a fundamental and comforting upbringing where I was able to learn the basics of self-love and confidence. These lessons comprised from my grandma enforcing the principle in me that school was my top priority, before I should heed to my looks or boys. To the eager moments while watching RuPaul's Drag Race and listening to RuPaul proclaiming, “If you don't love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else?” Or observing the failed relationships of close family members solely because of one person's desire in the idea of obtaining a partner before obtaining a sense of self confidence. In those small vocal snippets and major observations, I knew to place my ability and knowledge ahead of my looks. And without mincing ones' words, I think this transpires across the board in all aspects of our life experiences. This lesson ties in with my former bullet. Once you know your personal worth and the value of that treasure to the world, you will never bring yourself to endure subpar experiences that do any less that to uplift you, support your dreams and inspire you.
4. Be honest with yourself.
In taking an honest look at yourself and your situations, you are able to set the best plan to move forward. We should all be past the stage where we fill our head with imaginary situations and events that we wish could occur. I've learned that is best to face reality and prepare ones' self for the best plan of action. I like to think that our heart and brain get a little offended when we masquerade like everything is okay. It's okay to not be okay, and it's okay to not have everything work out like you wanted it. Most importantly, it is okay to fail. The better resolution of the two is to find ways to address the situations that are ongoing. Whether it is an overwhelming feeling of stress and pressure, or emotions of inadequacy and loss. It's important to address those feelings in being honest with yourself. Your feelings are never invalidated --- something that I'm learning more than ever this year.
5. Seek to find inspiration in the most "likely" places.
At times, I think that we have this common tendency to imagine fresh sources of inspiration as these very obscure, off-beaten and "super artsy" places in order to gain a new mindset of inspiration for the next stage of life. While, I don't disagree with this sometimes contrived idea, I think that sometimes the inspiration for that next project, or the instant that you find clarity for your day can be in the middle of your morning walk or sometimes just sitting on the pavement while reading a book. As a testament, I found inspiration for this blog post while sitting in my piercing hot dorm room while surfing the net. You don't always have to take an enlightenment trip to India or listen to the ocean's waves in order to get inspiration (but it would be nice). Vision boards are also very helpful. I keep them on my desk and set goals for the semester. Again, you never know where you will find inspiration, so keep searching for it.
my most peaceful moment on campus 6.15.14
I'm sure that this list will grow to become a cumulative list for all my four years. I'm excited for what life has to bring for me and what I can do in this life.
Labels: college, lessons, time, will tell, wisdom