Read to know about the third year’s mental and physical pressures, and what you should do to prioritise your mental sanity over every aspiration for perfection.
If someone asks me about my experience in the last year of college, my usual reply starts with “traumatic,” “stressful,” and ends with a “Thank god! It’s ending.” As much as I talk about my course being an absolute mismatch with what I had expected, it would be grossly unfair to make these incorrect statements. Rephrasing my earlier assertion – the University of Delhi (DU) has taught me everything I need to know, but my course contents. In this “everything” I found umpteenth life lessons that no school or professor could have taught me. The biggest, and possibly the most crucial, piece of information here is a simple remark – ‘nothing is more important than your mental sanity.’ A kind senior of mine reiterated this sentence enough times for me to remember for a lifetime, and I thank her for this.
This statement held the most importance for me when I was about to begin my third year in college. Right now, with college society elections around the corner, most second-years are filled with the same crippling anxiety and fear. Many have already started prepping for entrances, while others have begun campaigning for the respective position they wish to take up in the next year. For those who emerge lucky, the moment when they are elected to take up the position of responsibility of their choice becomes one of the most fulfilling memories of their college life. A fresh hope of leading the society to newer heights is ignited, and they embark on a journey of success and failure in equal measures.
In this quest to fulfill the supremely high expectations of seniors, we imbibe from them a culture which embraces perfectionism, and we develop a work thic which strives to follow procedure in a similar fashion as they did. Oftentimes, we become so invested in an association that we give priority to it over everything else – friends, family, and sometimes even our career. This blind faith in the mechanical workaholic culture and putting precedence of the society over everything is, sadly, toxic.
In this system, where graduating seniors urge their juniors to work harder and take the society to newer heights, no one utters the words “take care” with equal emphasis, or usually leave this bit in the post – script. No one says it often enough, that we need to prioritise our career and health over everything else, and that an all – consuming behaviour by virtue of heading a society or an institution is problematic at the behest. Many end up micromanaging most of the work, which leads to a toxic work environment, not only for them but also for those peers who wish to learn.
While it is important to do justice to the position one has been elected to, it is a different ball game when that individual has to juggle society with marks and all the other baggage that the third year comes with. Third year is not easy for most, and acceptance of this is the only way forward. Anyone who says otherwise is either blessed with god – gifted abilities or is simply bluffing their way out of everything. Third – year is an important juncture, which has many minute yet important decisions, and a lot of us do not possess the luxury to fail academically and rely on our parents as a back – up.
Despite all this, it comes to an end, which is when the realisation of taking unnecessary stress because of “that one error I missed out from editing” or “that one prop that I forgot to place” comes into the forefront. I am glad I had a senior who reminded me to not take extreme pressures and enjoy my last year in college alongside the work. Hopefully, more seniors can be the same guiding light for a junior who is about to take up the same, seemingly intimidating role they once held.
Feature Image Credits: NDTV