After such a long holiday season, we’ve gotten accustomed to “laissez-faire” attitudes. For those of us fortunate enough, our schedules were wide open, allowing for not just relaxation, but also spontaneity and flexibility to make plans with close ones. While for others, the lack of routine felt overwhelming, as we couldn’t fathom what to do with our time. Unfortunately, for some of us, getting back into our university routines is proving to be just as hard.
This adjustment can feel overwhelming, forcing us into breakdowns during the first week as we finalize our course schedules. The belief that this routine should have been easy because of its familiarity makes it all worse.
But 2022 stressed the importance of one previously neglected practice: self-care. Instead of being tempted to rush to get settled in, we at The Medium encourage you to give yourself a break as you readjust to your class schedules—we all require a reboot, or rather, a couple of jabs to our inner-restart buttons.
The expectation that we should have everything figured out, working at maximum productivity from the get-go, embodies an unrealistic “one-size fits all” ideal—one that is arguably false and unsustainable. Overloading ourselves at the beginning of the semester could deplete valuable energy we might need in the future when our workloads get heavier.
Instead, embracing a slower pace allows us to focus our energy into both things that require it and things that need it. Slow living forges the required space for us to do our best by allowing us to maintain steady and realistic routines while avoiding burnout.
So, this semester, The Medium supports you to reject unrealistic productivity standards. Learn from the past year and go slow: put yourself first.