Have the availability for your commitments

Megan Keane, Columnist

It’s important to take every opportunity that’s available to you. Even if that opportunity is sleeping a couple hours instead of bothering to hustle to class. We must remember, however, that  it’s important not to spread ourselves too thin. I’m realizing that quickly. As a student, I can vouch that it’s incredibly hard to remember—at times—that school should be my top priority. It seems like, with being medicated for anxiety and that treatment working for me, I’m way more open to picking up other commitments and slacking on school work.

See, when my anxiety was at its peak (basically my whole life), I prioritized school to an unforgivable extent. It made me look like a good student, but I was basically a skin sack full of stress. It’s not that I was always studying or anything, but homework, presentations, and tests came before everything else in my life. I didn’t know what would happen if I didn’t turn in a paper on time, show up for a presentation or test and—most importantly—I didn’t want the consequences. I was scared of getting less than a good grade, I was scared of being personally lectured, I was scared of every possible possibility.

One important thing to note here, though, is that work was a close second on my list of priorities. Once I was old enough to legally work, I got a job and took on way more hours than I legally should have been able to. I had a high school teacher who recruited me for our speech team because she claimed that the amount of hours I worked was criminal. If I was on the speech team, I wouldn’t have to work so much.

In hindsight, I know now that I shouldn’t have committed to something that wasn’t important to me. I was steadily dedicated for an entire season, but by my junior year, I had so many other more important responsibilities, and I felt as though I let my coaches down.

That’s about how I’m beginning to feel in regards to this semester and the workload I took on. With the absence of my anxiety, it seems I’ve traded my sleepless nights filled with worry that I wouldn’t wake in time for my commitments for sleeping through all my alarms. I’m not gonna lie, it’s the best sleep I’ve ever gotten in my life, but it’s impeding on my class schedule and hindering my class experience.

Class has always been hard for me to go to. I can’t articulate why. It’s obviously not a waste of time. I wouldn’t categorize myself as lazy. This semester, I’ve been rushing out of my afternoon classes to get to work, coming back to my dorm exhausted, and sleeping through my morning classes. It makes me ask myself, if I knew I wasn’t going to be that consciously available, why did I commit to 18 credit hours and a part time job (in addition to writing for the paper)? The answer is simple: I expected that I’d be able to do it all. We need to know ourselves. We need not to spread ourselves thin. I need to reprioritize.

Megan Keane is a senior English and psychology major. She can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].