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Fear of not sleeping

| Friday, October 3, 2014

If I were asked to describe the average Notre Dame student in one word, I would immediately think of “overbooked.” I am convinced there is some sort of unspoken competition amongst our student body over who can have the fullest schedule, who can have the busiest day, who can spend the least time in their room — and I am a full participant.

It’s so easy in college for one to get caught up in the wide variety of experiences available to them. Posters hang everywhere, presenting an abundance of opportunities ripe for the picking. At the beginning of freshman year you are dropped into the Joyce Center like a rat in a maze, left to fend for yourself in a jungle full of extracurricular activities. Clubs, sports teams, organizations — one feels almost compelled to try their hand at them all. I, for one, still get LISTSERV emails from multiple organizations that I haven’t participated in or even thought about since Activities Night.

Recently, I’ve heard a lot of people using the term FOMO. Fear of missing out, you say? I’m starting to become more worried about fear of not sleeping. It’s too tempting to fill my days up with events, meetings and jobs. I always feel accomplished — but at the end of the day, have I really accomplished anything other than being busy? While in my case, I definitely feel that I am spending my time on worthwhile proceedings, I think that is an important question we all need to ask ourselves. Are we using our time as wisely as we should?

Quantity does not always mean quality, and in a college setting where our time is more valuable than ever, there’s nothing wrong with being choosy. Your résumé can’t go on forever and neither will your four years of college. Don’t spend too much time trying to do everything possible on campus or you will quickly find that you won’t have enough time to appreciate the things you are doing.

College is a place where you can find out many things about yourself. Don’t hide behind a wall of extracurriculars; find out the things you are good at and excel in them and let a few good experiences speak for themselves. Instead of rushing around to meeting after meeting, take time to enjoy a few things in particular that you love. I guarantee you will feel less stressed, just as busy, but even more successful than ever before.

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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