By Kayla Paradiso
Have you ever woken up, rolled over to look at your phone and been shocked to realise it’s one o’clock in the arvo and you’ve missed half of the day?
Well, that seems to be happening quite regularly to me, especially as a full time student who also works part-time. The rare morning, on which I have free time, I make sure to mortally abuse. But, have you ever wondered what all this hard work is for?
I mean, do you even want to be what you’re studying to be? I find myself questioning this more than I should be.
We’re constantly trying to keep up with unrealistic due dates for an assignment that has a ridiculous word count. And what do we do? We obey and we immerse all our energy into a piece of work that we’re so ashamed of, and we don’t even know how we managed to say the same thing several times.
But we do it because we’re told that if we do, we will surely be a successful student. Maybe not directly, but the constant regime we’re thrown into certainly suggests this inevitable success.
Yesterday, while I was working, I ran into an old high school teacher who once taught me English. This encounter left me rather stuck (for lack of a better word). When she asked me what I was studying, I told her I was an aspiring journalist, to which she replied, ‘I hope you produce better articles than the ones I read in the paper’.
To this, I found myself wondering ‘do I want my work to be scrutinised by those to whom I owe my literary knowledge?’ And so once again, as I seem to always find myself, I was stuck.
The tremendous amount of pressure piled on us students can be sometimes quite overwhelming. I mean, how many of you just want to travel the world for a while? Walk through forests you didn’t even know existed, run up a mountain and breathe in the air of a foreign country, take a selfie at Lincoln Memorial, watch the ball drop in Times Square, and get lost amongst a sea of people, and don’t get me started about the picture perfect landscapes that surround the Greek islands.
Although I cannot speak for everyone, there’s too much we simply have not done yet. We haven’t even begun living, yet we’re supposed to know what we want to do for the rest of our lives in a world already filled with professionals who think they are far superior than a bunch of entry level kids.
Sure, some of you will tell me to take a gap year, and others will bluntly disagree, but when you’re around confident, independent people who are supremely sure of what they want in life and have it all so strategically planned, it can be intimidating.
So I figure, if you can’t beat them, join them. But not quite. You see, I have a plan, and that plan is to go with the flow. If life has taught me anything, it’s to seize the day. If you don’t take anything away from this article, take this—a phrase that has been slaughtered but is truly the key to this life: Carpe Diem.
You know, in my final years of high school I never got an A for English, yet my interest to be a journalist and have my work published in a magazine overpowered any uncertainties I had with my writing. So I chose to carpe diem and study what I thought would make me happy. I became a student at university as an uncertain aspiring journalist amongst a sea of, what looked like, confident aspiring journalists.
So when you roll over in the morning and realise you’ve missed half the day, don’t worry. Know that you deserved that over-the-top sleep- in and know that life has your back. The choices you make to improve your satisfaction will always conquer.
I plead, eat as much as you want, watch as much as you want, party as much as you want, and don’t let the pressure of the future overcome your present daily struggle to get up in the morning.