Hey girl,

How are you? If you really thought about the answer to that question, your answer would most likely not be as simple as “I’m fine”. Are you stressed? Upset? Excited? If you are anything like me, you could answer yes to all three of those in one day. Life is hard enough without throwing college into the mix.

I’m a girl who cherishes her free time since it has become so rare. I’ll usually spend it eating some chocolate and coloring to help me de-stress. If I’m not doing that or sleeping, I’m working on my coursework. It’s a fun life, right?

During these four (or so) years, it may feel like you have lost yourself. Every night becomes a late night. Every new day brings a new assignment. Every weekend seems like a blessing until you spend it in the 24-hour library to stop yourself from getting too far behind.

Now add the emotionally taxing parts of life to that stressful schedule of yours. The gossip, drama, and heartache that always comes your way. Seemingly, we can’t escape them. No matter how much you try to push distracting thoughts to the back of your mind, they come back and take over. For whatever reason, this part of us has given us the reputation of not being able to handle difficult tasks like guys can.

On the contrary, I think it shows that women are even stronger than they think since we are doing just as much work as them while maintaining healthy friendships and relationships.

Being in a male-dominated field has shown me the reality of why women don’t necessarily thrive in a co-ed setting. Whether it is with our friends, project teammates, club members, etc., we are constantly surrounded by the feeling of having to prove ourselves. Asking for help seems like the worst possible thing you could do.

Wouldn’t that just be feeding the stereotype that we are not cut out for this? Even though you work extremely hard to prove to others that you can succeed, it feels like it’s never enough. Can you finish the project the fastest? Can you answer the questions that no one else can?

Can you do better than your classmates on every assignment and exam? Even with all of that, can you also get more interviews and internship offers than your peers? Everyone is constantly competing, and it is exhausting.

Why do we do this to ourselves? Better yet, why are others pressuring us to be ‘perfect’? If they aren’t flawless, why do we need to be? The answer is quite simple – we don’t.

We should be building each other up, celebrating each other’s achievements, and working together. I know many women, including myself, who struggle with having confidence in their abilities.

If we are already fighting with ourselves, how can we possibly think it’s okay to do that to each other? All of the women I have had the honor of meeting in college are so intelligent and determined. I know for a fact you are, too.

You have the power to do anything. All of the tools are at your disposal. Don’t let anyone make you feel less adequate because of everything you are balancing. You are doing the best you can.

If you feel as though the guys who always get perfect scores are better than you, just remember who will be happier when you have your best friends supporting you, and they only have their stack of A’s.

I believe in you!