Column: Do not sweat the small stuff

Liz Stephens, Columnist

Each summer, I make it a priority to discover ways to grow as an individual and to have a better semester than the last. I love buying and reading all of the personal development books I can get my hands on and often find that while reading, they spark many ideas and mottos to use in the upcoming semester. Unlike some students, I do not dread the start of the semester. Instead, I am the nerdy girl who is excited and trying to find ways to optimize my time and reach goals before the semester even starts.

With my analyzing and reading, I came up with two mottos or phrases that I am implementing this fall. The first one that really hit home with me was “Don’t sweat the small stuff.”

Believe it or not, every bad thing or every challenge we face is not the end of the world.

If something bad happens, find a way to remain positive, because you have control over how you handle situations and what happens to you.

As a student it is so easy to let one minor flaw in our day ruin it as a whole.

I try to treat myself to at least one thing I enjoy doing daily, whether that be grabbing coffee before my 9 a.m., hitting the gym, taking a short nap between classes or sitting on the Doudna Steps just to enjoy some fresh air between classes. Usually I try to do all of these every day, but with a busy schedule I do not always get my beloved nap or Americano from Starbucks, so I try to get at least one.

I have noticed that doing these things to stay positive instead of choosing to dwell on the small stuff helps me not only handle the not-so-appealing situations better, but to set myself up for success. Let’s face it – success is what we all want.

Instead of letting your day be ruined because you forgot a textbook or woke up late, choose to do something that makes you happy and move on with your day and optimize its potential.

The second realization I had this summer was “if something does not make you happy, drop it and drop it fast.” You are not obligated to keep anything or anyone in your life that does not make you happy.

As students, it is almost like we theoretically pull a little red wagon around to class every day full of things that make us happy, sad or things we hate. The things that do not make us happy weigh us down day to day and can make our days harder than they need to be.

When we do not unload the things that make us unhappy, it not only can affect our academics, and our social lives, but our relationships with others as well.

This summer I chose to let go of a lot of people who no longer benefitted me, who did not help me grow as a person and who no longer made me happy. It is time for us students to put our happiness first and to stop toting around things and people in our lives that do not benefit us.

Liz Stephens is a junior journalism major. She can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]