Monday, March 20, 2017

Play Hard Work Hard

Things are starting to look up again this semester: I interviewed for a D.C. non-profit (and I think it went well!), I received A's on two of my midterm essays, and I finished my application for a fellowship a whole hour ahead of when I thought it was due (hence, now having time to blog). Granted, there is still a ton of stuff to do, but I'm incredibly satisfied with everything I've accomplished this weekend. One more week of classes and meetings, and a ten page paper due Friday, and then I'm free for Spring Break. Arguably, Spring Break will be just as busy as I catch up on appointments, but I am definitely looking forward to having some time to rest and not traipse around campus all day.

Sometimes when I feel this happy, I get anxious because I start thinking about all the things I still need to do; this time, the satisfaction feels well deserved. One night, when I was so stressed I couldn't even stay asleep, I tried to listen to music to calm myself, and inadvertently played a few of Lorde's old songs. I don't know how, but I instantly felt my stress melt away. The line that resonated with me the most from those moments was from "Tennis Court:"

"Because I'm doing this for the thrill of it, killin' it // Never not chasing the million things I want"

Between midterm papers to extracurricular meetings, I'm starting to really embrace the notion of work hard, play hard. Despite the busy week last week, I still committed the time to plan and throw a surprise party for Anisha, a fact that I'm proud of not only because she deserves the occasion to be valued and celebrated, but also because it proved to me that grades and academics are not the most important thing in life.

That said, I think part of the reason why I have been enjoying my academics lately as well is the greater incidence of "fun" events. Though I strive to "work hard, play hard," what ends up happening more so than not is that I work hard at the expense of play hard — and I enjoy it, the thrill of it, killin' it, chasing the million things I want. However, it's been making more sense to me that the notion of play hard must be available to motivate the work hard. Otherwise, the existential despair of "what is the point" starts to settle in. With that in mind, I am going to continue to work hard, but also prioritize things happening outside of my academics. ◊

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