What keeps you going?

What keeps me going? This has been a question I have been asking myself recently with the transition the end of summer, to training, to the second year of graduate school. It has been a whirlwind of emotions, thoughts, and actions that have led me to this post. I found myself starting to feel burnt out from all of the directions I felt myself being pulled, and I knew this was not a path I wanted to head down. Yet, I wasn’t sure how to solve this problem, and now as I look back I realize there were just a few simple things I needed to do.

Examine my feelings. A major part of why I was feeling overwhelmed was due in part to my decision to write a thesis for my graduate program. Writing a thesis was something that was going to take a lot of self-motivation to do with very little structure, and it took me all summer to realize that this was not a situation I could thrive in. I also needed to examine if this was something I wanted to do, and I realized it was not. Fortunately, writing a thesis is not a requirement, so I took some serious time to evaluate how I was feeling and choose the right path for me, which is taking the comprehensive exam route. I think during busy times it can be hard to focus on our feelings or emotions because we are too focused on finishing our to-do list. I have found that a major part of self-awareness (which in my opinion is a key to success) is constantly examining how we feel in situations. There are many methods to do this such as prayer, writing, running, meditation, and blogging. What methods have you found that work best for you?

Rediscover passions. During busy times it may be difficult to focus on those fun and rejuvenating aspects of life we love so much. I found that it is essential to focus in those aspects when I start feeling burnt-out, and maybe should start earlier to prevent that from happening. This year I’ve decided to volunteer with a youth group at my church because it not only gets me off campus, but it is something I love to do. Remember do what you love (I know you love your job, but I’m sure you love something else too). So take a spontaneous trip, visit a loved one, catch up on a series, or whatever it is you are passionate about – make time to do it.

I would love to hear from you – please share @byebyeryan

In peace,

Ryan Bye

Student Affairs - the First Years

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