Thunks from College

I’m done! I finished a year of college. Got the last final finished, the last essay pounded out of my head, last assignment turned in. It feels great! So, now that I’ve survived, what did I learn? That’s a good question…

I learned…

 

1. Exactly what parts of the textbooks you don’t have to read. Seriously. When you’ve got chapters over fifty pages long, you kinda have to learn what’s not important. And now I know! All those intensely annoying semi-articles they put smack in the middle of the sentence so that you have to flip to the end of the article just to find the end of the sentence from the main text. Most of those articles actually weren’t worth reading anyways, and I finally figured that out. Now I can indulge my pet peeve and skip over them with a clear conscience. Muahahaha!

2. How to apportion out my homework so that it all gets done when it needs to. This was especially tricky this past semester because all my courses were online, which meant that I didn’t have to sit in a lecture…which meant that I had to read more. With four classes that have entirely different schedules, it was interesting trying to mesh them in one way or another to figure out what my actual schedule should look like.

3. That it’s really a good idea to back off and trust God when I’m stressing out over grades. (I do that a lot…stressing out, I mean. Not fun.) When I finished last semester with a 4.0 (honestly, I took Web Page Design, Ceramics, and Sign Language. How do you flunk any of those? The excitement of those classes helped me get through the two I didn’t like so well. XD) there was, of course, the pressure to keep that grade up. I hadn’t worried about my GPA through the first semester, but suddenly I felt pressure to keep up the frighteningly good image I accidentally made for myself. Getting invited to join an honor society that only students with good grades can join didn’t help much. Suddenly it wasn’t just about learning, it was about performing.  This past semester I really had to learn to let go of that and surrender the stupid GPA to God. It’s amazing how much easier it is to get things done when you’re not stressing about grades!

4. That a positive outlook vastly impacts my ability to do things. You know, when you’re busy grouching about a dumb test, it’s a little hard to write that nice, respectful opinion piece for your other class. (Yes, I’m afraid my instructors had to put up with a few sarcastic days…) I found out that learning to praise God for the little things makes a big difference in my overall attitude towards my schoolwork. Praise Him for the bonus points the instructor gave me, the comment the English teacher put on my essay saying she could hardly find anything to edit at all, the sun coming through my window while I’m stuck indoors doing school. Whatever. Praise makes a huge difference towards a positive outlook! I should try doing that more often…

 

It’s amazing some of the things you can learn that are sort of not what your instructor expected. 😉 If I had to give someone else advice about college (which might be a bad idea, knowing me…), and if I wasn’t in a naughty mood, I would have to say that you have to just decide to learn from whatever happens to you. Make everything into a lesson of some kind, and welcome the lessons. If you treat everything like it’s an adventure and something you can learn from, it’s much, much easier to get through. But don’t expect to perfect that attitude overnight. Sorry, that ain’t happening, if I’m any example. So take everything a day at a time, or an hour at a time, or whatever, so you don’t get overwhelmed. And, when stuff is stressful, pray. God knows exactly what’s going on, so go ahead and give it to Him. He makes technology behave, confusing assignments make sense, and stressful timed writing assignments turn out well. 🙂

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