Hey, guys – welcome back to TNTH!
First and foremost, thank you for coming back after I spent the past month away from the blog and social media. This isn’t an official return and my return during Spring Break probably won’t be permanent either, but I am ready to occasionally come back to the blog and write whatever may be on my mind. I mean, this is a creative outlet away from my grad studies.
With that being said: it’s that time of the month where I like to write a little something called…
This has been one hell of a month. Within the past month, I’ve dealt with some personal things, I’ve done what possibly feels like 9 different projects for school, and I’ve been going through my own personal mental battles as I begin to finish up these last 2 months of my grad studies. Nevertheless, I feel like I had no time for myself or for others, and because of that, I feel the way I feel. But that’s not what we are talking about… well we kinda are.
You see, I’ve realized that although I’ve been begging for a break with school ever since its start back in January, I find myself being sort of afraid to not be busy with it. Lemme explain: when I say I had something to complete for my classes every single week, I mean I had something due for my classes every single week. It literally started with a class presentation I had to do on the first day of the month and I had to fight through what I was personally going through in order to efficiently get my part of the presentation done. Since then, I feel like I’ve been burying myself in schoolwork so that I’m able to focus on everything else besides what’s going on with me. In a sense, I’m not really allowing myself to fully be aware of my emotions and thoughts because I’m tired of being self-aware, and being me at the moment is honestly even stressful for me to handle.
And the sad part is I know that there are many people in my situation who are doing this to themselves without even noticing.
I started to realize this whenever I was taking breaks from writing my papers for my classes. It’d be nice to relax and watch some YouTube videos and wind down for the night, but then I began to self-indulge in some negativity with myself. I started to think about all the negative shit that I punish myself with whenever my mind is relaxing and it just becomes too much at times. I purposely worked on my Master’s Thesis for 12 hours straight just so my mind didn’t wander in insecurities and other shit it didn’t need to be thinking about. I planned almost every day during Spring Break to write up a different assignment for class when I really should be taking a well-needed break from the work. In a sense, working on grad school assignments is all that I know now, and I don’t know how I am going to cope when I finally graduate and there’s no more work left to do.
It’s a shame that there are people out there who would rather keep their minds busy so that negativity doesn’t ruin their day. It’s sad that we are thrown so much work that at one point we use doing the work as a mechanism to avoid our problems and issues with ourselves and the world. I always say this, but we are a generation of people who are very fast-paced and quick; we work extremely hard to get where we wanna be and when we do, we try to keep it up in a world full of thousands of people doing the same thing. I’ve seen people my age work themselves sick because they are continuously working to build their empire and their brand.
In my case, I see how hard my mother works to support my family. You never see how hard your mom or your dad works until you finally start to see them as actual human beings. I can see the gear in my mom’s head turn whenever an issue comes up. I see how she instantly tries to keep herself busy to balance out the stress she’s feeling. I see how much she tries to tune the world out for the sake of her own happiness and health. I see it, and it a way I find myself mimicking it. I’m not saying it’s my mom’s fault that I’m now this way, I’m saying that this isn’t just something that happens to workaholics, overachievers, and perfectionists. This happens to everyone. This happens to even the people who clock out from a 9-to-5 job. This happens to part-time/full-time students. This happens to stay-at-home parents. This happens to any living creature capable of self-destruction.
The bright side of it all is that yeah, we do get work done this way. I am now in a comfortable position where most of my major assignments are in the process of either being written or in the process of being outlined; nothing that I have to work on is not carefully thought out already. I realize that since starting grad school, this has been the only way I’ve been able to handle school stress and anxiety, and it’s worked but at what cost? Is it really worth disconnecting myself to everyone and the world? Is it really worth me not even wanting to take my own feelings and emotions seriously? Is it really worth me not knowing who I am anymore?
This sounds quite depressing and I’m aware that readers may read this as like a cry for help, trust me that I’m fine and I’m learning ways to cope with the workload. I’ve accepted the fact that whatever this is right now is my life until I graduate. I’ve accepted the fact that grad school doesn’t last forever and once I actually graduate, things in my life are going to change like my coping mechanisms. Just because I’m not able to balance out work and myself right now doesn’t mean it’s not possible. I know I’m horrible under pressure and I can’t juggle twenty different things at the same time; but, there are people who are able to work their asses off and still have a good head on their shoulders. If you’re anything like me, finding ways to break the habit of running away from yourself is your closest answer to happiness. Find ways to celebrate yourself. Take out the time to look at yourself in the mirror and ask yourself if what you’re doing now will pay off. Is you running to your work a result of inspiration and passion, or are you just running away from yourself? Running to your work and ignoring your basic self-care needs isn’t the answer, and it isn’t always going to equal success.
Think of it this way: will the success feel good after months of destroying yourself in the process?