What the Hardest Semester of My Life Taught Me
Start writing a post
Health and Wellness

What the Hardest Semester of My Life Taught Me

A break from holding it all together should never be a bad thing.

19
What the Hardest Semester of My Life Taught Me
Photo by Vicky Sim on Unsplash

Spring 2021 was grueling. The only stable, consistent thing during the entire hectic semester was my frequent shedding of tears. It was hard. There were times I wondered why I chose to embark on a journey that included 8 classes, 2 assistantships, and 1 new job (during a pandemic, no less).

Over time I learned that decision was largely for the need to feel “normal" while at home taking online courses. The countless hours of working, researching, and writing did hold semblance to the hustle and bustle of living on-campus. Like many other semesters, I felt tired and overwhelmed. Yet, something about it took a harder toll on me than usual.

Perhaps it was purely the quantity of the tasks I had to complete that had me in a tizzy. I felt like a breathless jogger, lost in a state of adrenaline, exhaustion, and the bothersome inkling that I was always going to fail myself.

I got entwined in 4 months worth of proposal writing, data collection, and German lectures. With the lack of a Spring break due to COVID-19, I was often that hopeless jogger I mentioned. And worst of all, I often felt there was no one in the audience cheering me on to that much desired finish line.

Unsurprisingly, I burned out quick. Feelings of fatigue and loneliness were encompassing. However, the Wellness Day (which entailed a class-free day) was the restart I needed. Of course, I spent part of that day working (I'm a student. How could I not?). Yet, the remainder was used thinking about the importance of placing myself on the same pedestal I placed all my other obligations on. Namely, it helped me to realize I was often my own bully. I would deny myself sleep, hobbies, and free time all in the name of being the “perfect" student.

After reflecting on how I needed to prioritize myself, I did just that. I adopted a new attitude, too. My slogan changed from, “ work hard, then work harder" to “work hard, then give yourself a breather." There were so many times in the past I passed up opportunities and outings to spend hours upon hours working. I always thought taking time for yourself was an unnecessary evil. Yet, it was the utter hardships of this semester that taught me self-care is a necessary good.

I mean, think about it: a strong, competitive athletic is one that prepared themselves for the demands of their sport, yet they also take care of their body. Their temple. The unit that houses that strength. A strong spirit can only hit so hard in a weak, defeated body. Self-care, even at a small level, can be a game charger. It can be that refresher you need to get up and carry on.

The trials and tribulations of Spring 2021 made me stronger, smarter, and more cognizant of myself. It taught me to care about my own non-school related wants, needs, and desires. But, it ultimately taught me prioritizing time for addressing those needs isn't “lazy" or “unnecessary," it's essential to carrying on.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Student Life

Top 10 Reasons My School Rocks!

Why I Chose a Small School Over a Big University.

97602
man in black long sleeve shirt and black pants walking on white concrete pathway

I was asked so many times why I wanted to go to a small school when a big university is so much better. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure a big university is great but I absolutely love going to a small school. I know that I miss out on big sporting events and having people actually know where it is. I can't even count how many times I've been asked where it is and I know they won't know so I just say "somewhere in the middle of Wisconsin." But, I get to know most people at my school and I know my professors very well. Not to mention, being able to walk to the other side of campus in 5 minutes at a casual walking pace. I am so happy I made the decision to go to school where I did. I love my school and these are just a few reasons why.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lots of people sat on the cinema wearing 3D glasses
Pinterest

Ever wonder what your friend meant when they started babbling about you taking their stapler? Or how whenever you ask your friend for a favor they respond with "As You Wish?" Are you looking for new and creative ways to insult your friends?

Well, look no further. Here is a list of 70 of the most quotable movies of all time. Here you will find answers to your questions along with a multitude of other things such as; new insults for your friends, interesting characters, fantastic story lines, and of course quotes to log into your mind for future use.

Keep Reading...Show less
New Year Resolutions

It's 2024! You drank champagne, you wore funny glasses, and you watched the ball drop as you sang the night away with your best friends and family. What comes next you may ask? Sadly you will have to return to the real world full of work and school and paying bills. "Ah! But I have my New Year's Resolutions!"- you may say. But most of them are 100% complete cliches that you won't hold on to. Here is a list of those things you hear all around the world.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lifestyle

The Ultimate Birthday: Unveiling the Perfect Day to Celebrate!

Let's be real, the day your birthday falls on could really make or break it.

43322
​different color birthday candles on a cake
Blacksburg Children's Museum

You heard it here first: birthdays in college are some of the best days of your four years. For one day annually, you get to forget about your identity as a stressed, broke, and overworked student, and take the time to celebrate. You can throw your responsibilities for a day, use your one skip in that class you hate, receive kind cards and gifts from loved ones and just enjoy yourself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Featured

Unleash Inspiration: 15 Relatable Disney Lyrics!

Leave it to Disney to write lyrics that kids of all ages can relate to.

71769
The 15 most inspiring Disney songs

Disney songs are some of the most relatable and inspiring songs not only because of the lovable characters who sing them, but also because of their well-written song lyrics. While some lyrics make more sense with knowledge of the movie's story line that they were written for, other Disney lyrics are very relatable and inspiring for any listener.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments