Monthly Archives: May 2013

Another Year Passes

Yesterday, May 12th, I turned 21. I celebrated by catching up on sleep and watching Monsters Inc. My birthday didn’t feel special, it felt like any other day (except it was Mother’s Day, love you mom!). I spent some time yesterday reflecting on the past year, and came to the conclusion that I didn’t do as much as I hoped. Which made me think, what makes a year worthwhile?

Do you need to win an award? Do you need to start a family, new job, or even new school? Do you need to finish a novel, or build a webpage? What does a person need to do to make a year in his or her life feel accomplished?

I can list things that I have done and haven’t done this past year, but does that mean that my year wasn’t fulfilling? Maybe. I feel that it wasn’t lived to its potential, but that could just be me. Maybe I’m too hard on myself for not reaching the goals that I set out to complete, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t do anything.

I joined the G-Steppas (Geneseo’s Step Team), and now I’m the secretary for next year. I joined the Sociology Club, and became the Academic Affairs Committee representative. I started fleshing out my two in-progress novels. I completed the prerequisite directed study for my senior thesis, and have the ball rolling for that project. I am done with my English minor, and only three classes from finishing up my major. I accomplished a bit in my last year. But I still didn’t do as much as I wanted.

I didn’t finish some of my short stories. I didn’t utilize my webpage, or make it from scratch. I didn’t learn HTML as I hoped, no driver’s license, no finished novel, no internship. Does that mean my year as a 20-year-old was pointless? I don’t think so. I mean, I did yesterday, but not today.

I didn’t do as much as I planned, but that doesn’t mean that it makes me a failure. It doesn’t make me any less than a celebrity signing three contracts for movies, or releasing a new album. It doesn’t make me any less than the person that just graduated with a Ph. D or with a job offer after graduation. It doesn’t make me any less, because I get to go on my own pace. And maybe I wasn’t destined to do anything great at 20, maybe it’ll happen when I’m 21 or 91 if I live until then. I don’t know. But I’m not letting myself feel down about it.

You shouldn’t either. I know there are times when you start comparing yourself to other people and then you just dump on yourself, saying that you didn’t do enough, or that you’re not good enough, or that your year was wasted. But it’s not. Because you survived that year, and you have a new start right in front of you. Make the most of it, and think about the things you did do and remember that those things were part of that year too.

Another year passes, but that just makes you wiser and more motivated for the next one to come.


Fear of the Unknown

One of my friends is starting to become overwhelmed with the pressure of figuring out what she wants to do with her life. I spoke to her yesterday, and she told me she would be transferring colleges her last semester in order to pursue an undergraduate degree in nutrition, instead of her current major (psychology). However, her new decision is giving her anxiety and she’s been stressing out over whether or not it is the right decision, whether or not it is reasonable to extend her undergraduate education for at least another year when she could be done.

I tried to be a good friend and told her that if it is what she wants to do, she should go for it. That other people’s expectations or reactions to her delaying her graduation does not matter as long as she is content. Furthermore, I told her that people don’t expect her to know what she wants to do. We have our entire lives to figure that out. In fact, some of my professors didn’t know what they wanted to study or their career path until years into their previous career.

So my advice to any of you who may be having this same issue: it’s okay to be afraid of what you don’t know, it’s fine not to have a plan, and it is certainly not the end of the world if you haven’t decided what you want to do with your life.

I believe that at one point or another people will have that unshakable fear of the unknown–the future, and that’s absolutely normal.

No Self Control: A Google Chrome App

I realize that I spend a lot of time browsing the internet instead of actually taking that time to do work. Often, I would procrastinate for hours on end without realizing because I don’t think I’m spending an exorbitant amount of time on Facebook or Twitter. However, in an attempt to control my browsing, I installed a Google Chrome app under the name “No Self Control”.

The way this application works is that when you try to go to a website, a dialogue box pops up with a math question that you have to solve before you can proceed. I think this is a great idea because:

  1. I’m not a math person so I will evaluate the necessity of my going onto that specific page.
  2. It helps work my brain by having me solve problems .
  3. The equations aren’t extremely hard either, so it’s not completely aggravating.

The downsides to this application is that there is no way to blacklist or whitelist specific websites. In other words, the app just works on every site, which is really annoying when I’m trying to work on a research paper and have to look through multiple articles. Furthermore, before going to a subpage or different link as directed from a website, the dialogue box pops up again. There are times when it pops up multiple times in a row, such as when I tried to log on to WordPress.

If there is a better program for PCs I would greatly appreciate if someone could share that knowledge with me! Thanks.