COLUMN: Find balance, learn, be happy

Four years ago, I came to college with the same mindset I think many students have — I’m about to rock this place.

With everything organized perfectly, I moved into my residence hall and was ready to take on the world ... or, at least Mount Pleasant.

Life was good in Barnes Hall. My roommates never tried to poison me, residential restaurant food only made me ill 50 percent of the time, and classes were going fantastically. That is, except for one.

My Introduction to Political Science class was the most upsetting thing to happen to me since Emma went down to the ravine on Degrassi.

Depressing. Disappointing. Embarrassing. I couldn't even talk about it.

No matter how hard I worked or the hours I would study, I just could not get good grades in that class. I was losing my mind.

Me. The salutatorian of my graduating class (who would’ve been valedictorian if it wasn’t for one stupid A-). That in itself was a fact I dwelled on for way longer than I should have and ...

(Pause for a breath.)

That’s exactly the point of this column.

Striving for perfection will drive you bananas, especially in college. My take on the whole thing? College, and even life, is all about balance.

First off, I’m not saying to disregard goals or expectations. You should reach for the stars or the moon or some other high place (Just don’t go for the sun. It’s too hot, and you aren’t even supposed to look at it directly).

But, if you set giant goals, give yourself a little wiggle room and don’t beat yourself up if you fail. It happens.

Your entire life, you will be searching to find your limits and figuring out how to balance. College is just the arena to test a few things out.

You’ll learn how much time you should put into a paper versus how much time you should spend watching a Boy Meets World marathon with your roommates.

You’ll determine how many times a week your wallet and your digestive system can handle eating Taco Bell.

Eventually, and after many tries, you’ll figure out how much Captain Morgan to pour into your mixed drinks.

In all these things, finding a balance is key.

I promise, even on the days you want to lose your mind, you’ll feel better if you take a deep breath and realize this probably won’t matter one year from now. Do your best to balance the stress, drama, school and work.

Lastly, although I advocate testing out new things and people will constantly tell you college is about experimenting, I implore you to still make (mostly) thoughtful decisions.

I don’t think there is a ravine in Mount Pleasant, but, if there is, in actuality or metaphorically, don’t go there! Just Google how that turned out for Emma — not pleasant.

Adios, Central Michigan University. It's been a sufficiently weird, great experience.

EDITOR’S NOTE: For those of you dying in anticipation to know how my class turned out, I ended up with a nice, beautiful C. Of which, I’ve never been prouder.


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