Monday, April 26, 2010
Negative and Positive
If anyone knows me, I think I'm a bit of an over-optimist. Maybe you can tell. I am a firm believer in positive thought, positive self-image, and positive language. It was a major struggle for me in the past to deal with constant negativity and apathy. Hitting brick walls feels familiar. Bang. Bang. Bang. I've realized I can't make people happy, and I shouldn't really try. All I can do is control my own behavior.
Anyways, last night at the house meeting (forgive me if you're from my house) I brought up an issue that I had felt very strongly about. Pearson College is most definitely a very academic place. Whenever you have the IB, dilligence and hard work is required. I'll be the first person to say that school is important. But so are other skills.
Not to start a tangent, but I came across an article the other day where the writer was saying that she spent all these years getting degrees and fell into a depression after she finished school. Yes she could write an A+ history paper but she didn't know how to pay her bills. I feel the same way. I'm perfectly content working and having a family instead of getting my PhD. That's just me, I digress.
The issue arises because a LOT of people here are planning on getting their PhDs from Harvard. And now is a particularly stressful time (exams coming up) so lately everyone is walking around complaining about how much work they have and how they's so tired from staying up all night, etc. Now if you look at the below post I have been blessed to have the opportunity to escape to my "host family." I came back to McL and in the span of 90 minutes 8 different people had complained about schoolwork. I was feeling great having finished everything and all of a sudden, like a wave of nausea I was hit with dread and worry. I started to feel stressed, even though I had nothing to be stressed about . Stress is contagious and why are we spreading it everywhere we go? Isn't more productive to just do our work instead of saying how much work we do? I don't think it does us any good. I mean, I'm totally down for venting sessions and talking to someone you trust for a good conversation. But why are so many people going around daily telling this one sentence to everyone they meet?
In the house meeting, I got cut off and people started saying that explaining their misery is therapy. Yes I understand it was a bad time to bring it up because I was speaking with stressed people. Nevertheless, I could not believe that people wanted to complain! We discussed earlier how house meetings shouldn't all be complaints (and I tried to phrase mine as a suggestion to have more compassionate speech). Maybe complaining is cathartic. But ask yourself, does it really help? By dwelling on this big pile is it going to go away? Or is it going to get bigger?
No one agrees with me, but I say STOP. Think about how your words affect other people. We don't need other people's stress on top of our own. Maybe this could be different. Maybe we could all have a supportive home where we all just tried to do as much as we could. Maybe we can approach our work with acceptance and maybe even enjoy it? I found the other day that writing my essay was actually fun. Maybe I sound like a dork and all of this is crazy.
Just PLEASE don't tell me you have so much work. We all do, and we will ALL get through this.
PS: Sorry if this is too strong.