I know this sounds quite counterintuitive and unproductive, but I felt like my first semester was defined by my loaded schedule at all times. I know that the first semester is supposed to be inevitably overwhelming. It was hard enough to get used to living on my own, and I really lucked out having a great roommate and floor which made the transition so much easier to get used to.
My problem lies with the fact that I would be bombarded with emails and various opportunities such as clubs to join and events to attend, and I wanted to take full advantage of all of it. In fact, I felt like I needed to take full advantage of it. I would constantly finish class and be headed to events at the student center or trips with career services, and it was nothing short of a lot to handle. At times I felt like I was addicted to signing up for things, and while I definitely still had time to spend with my friends, I was to lighten up on the commitments this semester.
When I'd find a free moment, which admittedly was not very often, I'd call my dad and tell him everything that was going on with my life at college. Every time, his reaction would be the same, something along the lines of, "I'm happy you're enjoying yourself, but don't push yourself so hard; just worry about getting good grades and having fun." His words about not thinking too hard about the career are comforting to hear, and sometimes I feel like the roles are reversed. I am the one that has too many goals for myself, and my parents are the ones reminding me to take a step back and enjoy where I'm at right now more than thinking about the future.
My mom has a fitness app that sends her daily, really cheesy, reminders of how to live a healthier lifestyle, which she checks religiously and occasionally sends to me. Usually I make fun of her for this, but (hopefully, she doesn't read this part) occasionally there are things I take away from it. One of which included the changes you make start with you, and small changes, whether it be in your diet or lifestyle add up to big things. Another day it was the importance of finding balance between the many aspects of your life. I think these two mantras definitely represent my goals for this coming semester. I want to maintain a better balance of my time, and not stress so much about filling my plate with activities. Although I love being busy all the time, and could barely find time to write this article during break between work and the other commitments I have, I think it'll be beneficial to decrease my activities slightly and give myself a little more downtime.