Looking Ahead

Have you ever seen a video of someone running hurdles when suddenly, one hurdle near the end trips them up and they eat concrete?

That hurdler is me and the last obstacle is the last leg of the school year.safe_image

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Yesterday, I found out that I have a 21 page paper due next week, and I don’t even know what the topic is supposed to be. Why me?

The thought of final exams makes me want to bash my head into a wall, and I’m certain I’m not the only one who feels this way.

So naturally, instead of doing homework in this unexpected 80 degree May heat, I relaxed in the grass, wearing sunglasses and sipping iced tea from a sippy cup.  As the weather warms (depending on where you are!) and my first year of college comes to a close, I’m finding concentrating in class harder and harder. But, rather than contemplating different ways to efficiently drown in my own tears, I compiled a list of things that everyone has to look forward to, as a friendly reminder that life isn’t so bad all the time.

Warning: some cheesiness ahead.

  1. Warmer weather as summer approaches

There’s a few people I know who hate the idea of an 80 degree day, but after an unbearably cold winter, there’s nothing I like more than sunshine on my face.

  1. Travel

Who knows what awaits you out there? Think about where you want to go and what you want to see.

  1. Growing every day

Personal growth is a satisfying experience that often happens when we aren’t paying attention.

  1. Gaining experience

This sort of goes hand-in-hand with the previous bullet, but as you gain experience, you’ll feel more confident with yourself. Wisdom does not always come with age.

  1. As you get older, drama will dissipate.

A friendly reminder that the girl who stole your 11th grade boyfriend will not matter forever (and she’ll probably end up alone, anyway).

  1. New friends you will inevitably meet

Unless you are a stage 9999 recluse, you’ll always be meeting new people, and it’s more than likely that you’ll just click with someone.

  1. No school (in the summer months at least, and after you graduate)!

This one is pretty basic (unless you take summer classes and/or you have a few years of school left, in which case I am sorry).

  1. Vacations

If you’re lucky, vacations are something people look forward to year-round.

  1. Paying it forward

Have you ever seen the movie? Spoiler alert: I cried. But really, even if you feel like there’s not much to look forward to, doing things for other people will bring about a personal satisfaction that is difficult to find elsewhere.

  1. The beach/the mountains

Whichever you prefer, but I’m almost certain it’s impossible to not enjoy at least one setting. It brings a sense of serenity.

  1. Adrenaline rushes and activities

Now, this bullet could be taken the wrong way, so I want to clarify that I do not mean you should embark upon stupid ventures searching for what makes you FEEL ALIVE.

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I’m suggesting that you find an active hobby that elicits a natural high or brings you excitement (without risking your life, unless that’s your thing).

  1. Creating history

Something special happens everyday. Even if it’s not important to you, it’s significant to someone else. The world is busy, and something is always going on. Everyday, you are creating history, and one day, you could change the world (see, Steve Jobs, MLK, Shakespeare, Nelson Mandela, etc).

  1. Finding not just one goal, but several.

If you have a single objective, one ultimate goal in life, reaching it will bring about a satisfaction unlike any other. However, after some time, even after your “life goal,” has been accomplished, that satisfaction will fade. It’s important to not focus all of your energies on one single thing, but rather nourish other possibilities. This way, upon the completion of one goal, you won’t be left aimlessly searching for another way to spend your time; you’d already have other goals to achieve. Cultivate several different aspects of yourself at once.

  1. Being at peace with yourself

This gets pretty deep and cheesy very quickly, but plenty of young people need to be reminded that as hopeless as it seems now, there is a future waiting for you. Whether you want a family or a significant other or not, if you chase it, what brings you peace will come to you. Why worry now?

I encourage you all to live in the moment and, as hard as it may be, try not to stress about your upcoming tests. What will be, will be.

Now, on your mark, get set, you can make it through finals! Go go go!

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