Being Overwhelmed is Overwhelming.

It’s getting to be that time in the semester.

This morning, while I was scrolling through Facebook on my phone in bed because I wasn’t quite committed to the idea of showering before class, I found a post from one of my residents that said something along the lines of, “Hey, seniors graduate in 164 days!”

Cue instant panic.

In class today I set up an appointment with my English Senior Seminar professor about my twenty page paper that’s due in less than a month. As I flipped through my planner, I realized that we only have a few more weeks left the semester.

And I am seriously stressed out.

It’s typical Alma fashion to talk about how much work we’re doing. I’m Emily and I’m involved in this organization! I plan this event! I have this huge long meeting on Thursday night! I’m taking this many credits!

Kind of like this.

I used to be one of those people. I’m trying to leave this mentality behind me. I’ve come to the conclusion that who I am as a person and who I am on this campus have nothing to do with how involved I am and how many credits I’m taking. It does not determine my value as a person.

It’s very easy to become overwhelmed by all the credits that we take and all the things that we’re involved in.

But there’s so much more to being a college student than the credits we take, and there’s so much more to being a college student than all the activities we’re involved in.

There’s also the fact that you’re a person.

I’m going to admit that I’ve had a rough two weeks. It’s common knowledge among most people who know me that I have an anxiety disorder and sometimes it makes life difficult. Sometimes my anxiety stems from school work and extra curricular activities, and sometimes it doesn’t. The past two weeks it hasn’t stemmed from college, it’s just stemmed from me being a human being and dealing with personal stuff.

We all deal with personal stuff. And sometimes it’s really hard to deal with when you’re already overwhelmed from school work and all of your activities.

I’ve decided that it’s okay for me to take time for myself. I can allow some time to set aside for “me time”, where I don’t worry about my school work or my ridiculous amount of activities. Last weekend, instead of working on my senior thesis and one of my papers, I took a night in. I ate an entire box of shaped macaroni and cheese, Skyped with one of my best friends from home, and watched The Dark Knight Rises. I then made pumpkin cookies at midnight.

It made me feel a lot better.

I’m learning that you don’t always have to justify how you’re feeling to other people. If you feel like you can’t go to a meeting for whatever personal reason, you shouldn’t feel obligated to go. If something is making you unhappy, you have the right to let it go. You’re in college and you’re in control of your own life.

My mother is always telling me that your college years are your selfish years. You get to spend time exploring who you are and what you’re passionate about, and you only need to worry about yourself. You do whatever you need to do for you.

For me, that was holing up and watching Batman and snarfing macaroni.

It’s okay to take a step back and get your personal life in order. How can you be a college student if you feel like you can’t even be a person? These are things that my therapist asks me on a regular basis and I think that everyone should ask themselves.

College is overwhelming. Classes are overwhelming. Extra curriculars are overwhelming.

Being a person is overwhelming.

In the words of Kid President, “It’s confusing to be a person sometimes.” And that’s okay.

Don’t lose yourself toward the end of the semester. You’re a person and you’re important.

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