Why You Should Rush

Why You Should Rush

Trust me, you won't regret it.
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Pretty dresses, perfectly curled hair, uncomfortable shoes, sweat dripping down your forehead, and older girls yelling at you to shut up: sounds exciting, right?

Girls from all over the country go to their respective universities in the fall to participate in what is known as "sorority rush." And from the outside looking in, I'll agree, it looks ridiculous. However, after experiencing rush and sorority life firsthand at the University of Georgia, my opinion of sororities has been completely changed. But first, let me give you some background.

I decided winter of my senior year that I was for sure going to rush in the fall. This basketball-loving girl who was always found wearing tennis shoes with her hair pulled up into a ponytail wasn't exactly the prime candidate for rush. My dad even laughed at me whenever I told him, "I would love living in a house with 60 girls for a year."

And on my first day of rush, as I stood outside of the 10th house I had visited that day with very sweaty hair and a very short patience, I started to think that maybe I wasn't cut out for this whole "sorority thing" either. Some girls still looked flawless. Some had been wearing wedges the whole day while I was barely making it out alive in my Jack Rogers sandals. Also, seeing this (pictured below) every time I got to a house was a little intimidating:

And although every tired bone in my body (at least the ones in my feet) was telling me that I should quit, I decided to finish the week. I loved the girls I was meeting and didn't think that quitting because it was hot outside was a good enough reason to back out.

Let's just say that my week ended pretty spectacularly. I'm not here to brag about my sorority or the girls in it (even though they rock), but I am here to tell you that you won't regret rushing.

It's scary. You have girls judging you based on what you say to them in the span of your five-minute conversation with them. They look you up and down and ask you questions you've been asked at least four times already that day. And as you get cut from house to house, you start to wonder if anyone is going to like you enough and if maybe there's something wrong with you. But a Gamma Chi (the girls who lead rush) told me something one day on the bus that completely changed my outlook on the whole process. She said, "What girls tend to forget is that these sororities know the kind of girls that will thrive in their sorority. Yes, you may be sad because your #1 choice cut you. But what you might be neglecting to focus on is that they truly don't see you fitting in with the girls in their sorority, and instead of being upset about it, you should be thanking them."

No, it doesn't end perfectly for everyone. Not every girl gets the sorority they want, and some don't even get a bid. However, it works out for everyone. Every girl I know who has gone through rush has been happy about the results. They ended up loving the sorority they got a bid from whether or not it was their first choice or they are glad they didn't get a bid because they didn't see themselves in a sorority. And although not every girl gets their "happily ever after" on bid day, every girl does have the opportunity to have a memorable week, and here's why:

When else will you have the opportunity to spend a week with 1,000 girls from across the nation, dressing up just to impress a handful of people and eating mediocre bagels from Chick-fil-A? That sounds so stupid, but think about it. I met some of my best friends I have today standing on a sorority's lawn waiting to go inside or riding on the bus from the sorority houses to the convention center. Some of them got a bid at the end of the week, some didn't. But that friendship wouldn't have ever started had it not been for rush week. And even after getting a bid, I've made the greatest friends ever from being in a sorority. We've gone through a lot together, from victories to really tough tragedies. And although I told myself I'd never say this, I can't imagine my freshman year without my "sisters" by my side.

All of this is for me to say that you won't regret rushing. You might hate it the first day, you might not get the bid from your favorite sorority that you've been wanting all week, or you might not even get a bid at all. But you're going to make some awesome friends, whether they're made the week of rush or during your year in a sorority, and you're going to end up where you're supposed to be. The girls I've met because I decided to rush have changed my life. They've made me want to be a better person and have been the most intentional, caring people I've ever known. So, rising freshmen (or sophomores, juniors, and seniors), rush. Even if you hate dresses, make up, and high heels, you won't regret the week you spend during rush. And who knows? You might end up with some pretty great "sisters."

Cover Image Credit: Facebook

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I Blame My Dad For My High Expectations

Dad, it's all your fault.
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I always tell my dad that no matter who I date, he's always my number one guy. Sometimes I say it as more of a routine thing. However, the meaning behind it is all too real. For as long as I can remember my dad has been my one true love, and it's going to be hard to find someone who can top him.

My dad loves me when I am difficult. He knows how to keep the perfect distance on the days when I'm in a mood, how to hold me on the days that are tough, and how to stand by me on the days that are good.

He listens to me rant for hours over people, my days at school, or the episode of 'Grey's Anatomy' I watched that night and never once loses interest.

He picks on me about my hair, outfit, shoes, and everything else after spending hours to get ready only to end by telling me, “You look good." And I know he means it.

He holds the door for me, carries my bags for me, and always buys my food. He goes out of his way to make me smile when he sees that I'm upset. He calls me randomly during the day to see how I'm doing and how my day is going and drops everything to answer the phone when I call.

When it comes to other people, my dad has a heart of gold. He will do anything for anyone, even his worst enemy. He will smile at strangers and compliment people he barely knows. He will strike up a conversation with anyone, even if it means going way out of his way, and he will always put himself last.

My dad also knows when to give tough love. He knows how to make me respect him without having to ask for it or enforce it. He knows how to make me want to be a better person just to make him proud. He has molded me into who I am today without ever pushing me too hard. He knew the exact times I needed to be reminded who I was.

Dad, you have my respect, trust, but most of all my heart. You have impacted my life most of all, and for that, I can never repay you. Without you, I wouldn't know what I to look for when I finally begin to search for who I want to spend the rest of my life with, but it might take some time to find someone who measures up to you.

To my future husband, I'm sorry. You have some huge shoes to fill, and most of all, I hope you can cook.

Cover Image Credit: Logan Photography

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Minimalism Addresses Our Culture Of Consumption

Decluttering your life and consuming less allows you to live in the moment.

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Most of us, at some point in our lives, have become trapped by our culture of consumption. It's a disgusting display of wealth and social status that social divides us. This social divide does a great job at inhibiting our potential at building objective, meaningful relationships. Material possessions become our identity and we begin to lose a true sense of who we really are. It's entirely possible for us to exist as content, beautiful human beings without participating in the culture of consumption we have been duped into believing in.

The problem with our culture of consumption is that it has become a key aspect of every activity. We give too much value to "things," focusing less on their contribution to our overall wellbeing, passions, or happiness. We may experience temporary contentment or pleasure, but it seldom lasts forever. Minimalism eliminates the "things" from our routine, allowing us to find contentment from the simple things in life.

Minimalism is not an expensive hobby one takes up on the quest for self-discovering and happiness. There is this huge misconception that being a minimalist requires a fat wallet and that your life is now restricted by rules and limitations. This simply is not true. This misconception comes from the elitist culture which has emerged through social media outlets. This distorted perception has blurred the individualistic nature of minimalism. A lifestyle often associated as a fad is actually a lifestyle that de-clutters your physical and mental state.

Minimalists are people who…

  • Make intentional decisions; that add value to their lives.
  • Focus on personal growth and the quality of their relationships.
  • Live in the moment.
  • Discover personal potential by eliminating obstacles standing in our way.
  • Consume less and intentionally.
  • Gift experiences rather than material possessions.

There isn't anything necessarily wrong with owning material possessions. If you find importance in an object that genuinely makes you happy then, great! Minimalism doesn't have to look like white walls behind aesthetically placed black furniture. This concept focuses on the internal value system we all forget we control. Start small; declutter your thoughts. We easily get stuck in our routines that we forget to look slow down and just breathe. Living in the moment is by far the most valuable aspect of minimalism because it allows us to feel and experience every minute of our existence.

If you're someone who enjoys nature, there's more value to be found in the adventures we seek out and create than those created for us. Discover birds you've never seen before, wander down trials in your neighborhood, or uncover beaches no one else knows about. You'll find more value in the creation of your own adventure because those experiences are completely your own.

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