On… School, Motivation & Life

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This week I took a few days off blogging- not because I wanted to, but because I needed those days to start getting my priorities back in order. I was behind on a lot of my homework & no matter how close my deadlines were coming, I just wasn’t stepping up and getting things done.

This semester has been tough on me and I’m not sure why. I think I’ve said that a few times every semester, really- I mean what student doesn’t? There’s always too much stress at some point or another. But this year is just different. I’m only taking three classes and they are all technically classes that I would really like. English composition (it’s for my professional writing minor), English Literature in the Holocaust & Math (which I obviously don’t love, but I’m working on it!)… So why is it that sitting through my two days of school feels like complete torture? Why do I leave class at 4PM on Tuesdays and Thursdays feeling like I have the weight of the world on my shoulders?

This week I couldn’t do it anymore. I was tired of procrastinating every single day and literally wasting hours avoiding the things I needed to do. Homework has begun to feel like literal torture. The very idea of having to write one more essay was giving me a full on panic attack. I actually had to force myself to sit in front of my computer for 3 hours on Tuesday night and was only able to get 40 words squeezed out onto my word document.

I’m not sleeping well anymore. Even when I try, I don’t fall asleep until late and I’m always up early. I look forward to going to work because it means I can legitimately ignore school for 8 hours. I’m drinking anywhere from 2 to 4 cups of coffee a day, something I have never EVER done before. I’m not eating well and most days I’m not even eating all that much. Something about school is stressing me out so much this year and is weighing heavy on my heart. I don’t know what it is but I know that I’m not talking about it and it’s making it worse. I just need to vent about it for a few minutes.

Among other things, I was letting my daily blogging take priority over school in the last month and a half. Basically everything was taking priority because it meant I could procrastinate a little longer. This week I knew that I needed a little detox from my online space and checking my emails regularly to see who’d stopped by. I needed to shut it all off for a little while and it helped a LOT.

On my way home from school Tuesday I spent the entire two hour bus ride just thinking. It’s been a long time since I had any spare time for myself where my brain wasn’t working in overdrive, or watching TV, or reading, or doing whatever things needed to be done. So I took those two hours to wonder about my life and try to pin point what it was that was making me really and truly feel depressed. Because honestly? I think that’s what it’s come down to. I don’t it’s anything super serious, I just know that I’m more often sad than happy lately and I know it’s a lot to do with school. I realized during that bus ride that although I love having “me time” I thrive in social situations and I’m not in enough of them these days. It feels like I hardly ever see my friends, or like they’re all busy without me. I know that’s not their fault, but being alone at school all day doesn’t help. I can go almost 8 straight hours without saying more than 10 words.

As a general rule I like to think of myself as a fairly positive, happy and motivated person. I don’t feel like myself recently. Especially when I’m at school or when I come home from there. I realized that there are a lot of things I want to be doing right now that I’m not doing, and I feel like everything is just happening too slowly around me. That sounds kind of vague, but I hate that I feel imprisoned in school from September-May, and if I want to accomplish anything it has to be in the summer months, assuming at that point I can even afford it.

I’m not too sure where I’m going with this post, but I guess I just needed to write about what’s been going on in my head and my heart. I haven’t really come to any conclusions except that part of me feels like right now I’m in school for entirely the wrong reasons- as in, not for myself, but to make the people around me happy and to conform to what society expects of 20-something-year-olds. That’s a pretty bold statement I think, but when I say it I know it’s not entirely wrong. I still love learning about the things that make me happy, but more and more I see myself doing these things somewhere far away. Yes, I have thought of dropping out school several times but I do not have the guts to do something like that. Not right now, anyway. Not yet.

This week though, my 3 day break helped a tiny bit. I stopped procrastinating by 70% and got things done. I turned my computer off in class and took notes the old fashioned way- pencil and paper. I finally started to take part in class discussions and to listen to everything my teachers had to say, not just bits and pieces. Anytime I caught my mind wandering, I got myself right back on track and paid attention. It was actually really hard, but I left school on Thursday feeling like I had actually been there and learned something. My grades are so far not what I want from myself- if I’m going to do something I want to do it properly and passionately. So I’m trying, I really am. I liked feeling like my head was in the game.

I think right now, that’s all I can do. Maybe I’m forgetting how to truly enjoy being in the moment and experiencing what life is offering me right NOW. That is really important to me and that is something that is motivating me to try and get myself back on the right track. I want to figure myself out again and be independent about it. Being alone isn’t a bad thing even if it is getting me down right now. I need to learn to embrace the extra me-time I’m getting these days. I need to remember why I’m doing the things I’m doing each and every day and do them to make ME happy. And if I’m truly unhappy, I need to have the heart to admit that to myself and do something to change it.

I’m working on it. I really am.

I want to know, what keeps you happy and motivated every day? Have you ever done something for someone else that you felt wasn’t right for you? Β 

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11 responses »

  1. To be honest, I haven’t been my usual happy self lately. I was kinda crabby for a few weeks, feeling dissatisfied. It was like everything was an obligation. A few things helped: a road trip/ mini vacay on a long weekend, where I got to be a bit geeky and tour a battleship; new shoes & dress for a great price; new bubble bath and shower gel for a hot bath, and no internet/cable for a few days. Sometimes you need to get away and unplug, whether you drive away in a car or float away in a bubble bath. Oh, and always music!

    • This is a very delayed comment but it’s so nice feeling like I’m not alone in these feelings! I know everyone goes through it, but you’re totally right. It’s those other *happy* moments that help! Music has been a big thing for me as always, but I’d love to go on a road trip or mini-vacay. I NEED ONE! Thanks for stopping by the blog, as always πŸ™‚

  2. Sorry you’re in a funk right now 😦 I don’t know what year you are, but in college we always talked about “the sophomore slump.” It was so common that our school actually started a program aimed at taking care of sophomores so they wouldn’t let the slump consume them. I hope you feel better soon lady…keep working on you!

    • I think our grades work a little differently in Canada- we don’t work by ‘sophomore’ and ‘junior’ or whatever the terms are, but I wish my school did something kind of similar! Sometimes school is just too much pressure- it just feels like teachers are trying their hardest to make you fail sometimes and it’s crappy. Thanks for the lovely comment though πŸ™‚

  3. I know exactly what you’re talking about here. School has a way of taking over your life and cutting people out. When I started University, I was completely and totally miserable. Then I made a great group of friends that were in all of my classes. We had a twelve hour school day together, so we got to know each other pretty well – that helped a lot. On one occasion, we did an all-nighter together and got to see how zany we all really were. It sounds crazy but it’s not as bad when you have some people to enjoy it with. That’s why I always try and plan study dates with my school friends, even if we’re not in the same courses. It makes it a little less painful.

    I took time off from school between Dawson and Concordia because I knew that one more class would break me. People look at taking time off so negatively, but there’s no reason to – if you want to be in school, you will be in school. It really does have to be your decision, though. I suggest taking a long, hard look at the bigger picture. Sacrificing a little ‘me’ time today might mean having more ‘me’ time in the long run. Try incorporating some ‘me’ time into your schedule. It sounds crazy, but I always plan a few hours in my week. Even on Monday, if I know my Friday nights are free, it gives me something to look forward to.

    Big hugs.

  4. A break was exactly what I needed to reaffirm my priorities. And for an entire week, I took a break from it all: from social media, from blogging, from incessantly catching up on my Reader. I just stepped away and it was refreshing. I was able to figure out my life again and it’s really helped me see where I want blogging to fall.

    But I’ve totally been where you are and I know it’s hard to figure it all out. Heck, I’m *still* trying to figure it all out. Still trying to figure out what I want to do with my life.

    I really have so much more to say about all this, but I can’t get my thoughts together. Big Internet hug from me. You’re awesome and I know you’ll figure it all out.

    • I keep thinking that I need to take a social media break, but then I feel like I’d just be missing SO much, is it even worth it? I almost feel like I’d be more stressed to get away from the internet for a week. It’s still something to think about though, I may seriously consider it during finals.

  5. Keep at it Melissa – it makes me sad to read that you feel like this! 😦

    I totally know how you feel, but all you need is a plan. Make a list, and allocate small time slots – little and often!

    Lots of blog love and good luck – you’re going to be fine πŸ™‚

    ps – thanks for being so awesome and sharing all of this with us.

  6. Pingback: School Inspiration « Press Play.

  7. Pingback: Honestly Happy « Press Play.

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