I know more than anyone how stubborn human beings can be. When you live in a world of constant competition it’s hard to take a step back and try to relax. L I F E is stressful this is a given but how do we deal with that? How do we decide when too much is enough and try to balance hard work, perseverance, relentless grind, a goal, and self-care? The simple answer….. it seems you can’t.
But I have come to disagree with this assumption. A little about me I believe is needed for this to really sink in…
Right now I am in my third year at a pretty rigorous college and am majoring in Psychology on a pre med track, I am a ranking officer in a club, work three jobs, am a research assistant, and am taking a full course load. For some time context, I start my day at around seven am and end around two am.
I know… I know… Everyone’s initial reaction is why? The basic reason is the busier I am the happier I am. BUTTTT, there are only so many hours in a day and unfortunately after a while I was burnt out. Mind you, I was never stressed because I loved the fast pace but I was tired. So I decided that I needed to change and how is what I want to share with you.
I am not going to lie and say that deciding to step back is easy because it is quite the opposite of that… it usually comes after a defining slump and what I am hoping is to intercept the defining slump for all of you.
My slump happened in a bathroom –as they do — crying after just getting a bad test score back in my science class (at this point it was really just a never-ending carousel of bad grades) and I realized that I couldn’t do it anymore. I knew with every bone in my body that my end goal is to go to med school but right now my grades were suffering. I needed to make a change. I needed to step back…
I had to learn that stepping back does not equal giving up. I had to come to terms with taking care of me. I was no use to anyone or even to myself as tired as I was. There is a stigma with self-care and less stress. I felt that by deciding that I needed a break I was telling myself I could not do it. It felt that I was giving up on myself and that is something I did want to do.
I am telling you that this is quite the opposite. There is strength in deciding that you come first. You are strong for wanting to have self-care. You deserve to rest. You are not giving up, you are just finding an alternate route. A win is a win no matter how long it takes you to get to the finish line. Take a step back. If you feel overwhelmed and unhappy. Please take a step back and think about what you need. If it time, take it. If it is break, take it.
I am one job lighter and a couple of credits thinner and I could not be happier. Of course this isn’t the end all, be all of your problems but this is the beginning.