Advice Anecdote

The joy of being overworked



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“I’m thinking so hard I’m sweating”


Picture this:

I’ve written three essays, edited two, and am in the midst of one more. A blanket is draped across my legs, hair in a high bun, as my fingers fly across the computer keys. The fan in the middle of my bedroom ceiling spins. Around and around it goes. But, it will never spin as fast as my mind. Words spill out onto the screen: “morals”, “journalism”, “burgers”. (yes, burgers… it was an essay about the over-sexualization of women in food commercial.)

As time ticks away, I type faster. 4:00 p.m. was approaching fast and my Spanish discussion assignment for the day wasn’t going to speak itself.

It was in that moment, I realized some key things:

  1. Taking 19 credit hours in one summer is not normal
  2. I‘m the nerd who chose this lifestyle willingly
  3. Fun Fact: a person can actually sweat from thinking too hard
  4. At my core, I need a purpose as much as I need air

Between the text:

I think one of the most important things I learned this summer was not between the pages of my textbooks, but the mere act of reading them.

It was not the answers to my test, but the mere fact that I was completing assessment after assignment over summer break.

For, during the hours I spent reading, studying, planning, emailing, and testing, I was working. learning? living.

Nonetheless, I was doing so despite throwing myself into this scheme of testing we call an “educational system”. Because it wasn’t the system that taught me. But the mere act of managing it.

Habits die hard

Since doing my academic marathon this summer, I made a couple decisions for my fall semester. I’ve once again willing chosen to…

  1. Take 20 credit hours
  2. Hold two leadership positions
  3. Be a tutor
  4. (And somehow still have time to fulfill my deep desire to come back to blogging!)

So, while I know I’ll dive deeper into the details of my multitude of experiences during my blogging blackout in the future, I thought I would explore the person behind the blog Type A Tactics: my crazy Type A self. 🙂

Why I am the way I am:

Aka: the many reasons I love being busy. Even when it drives me mad;)

Yolo: Remember when we were kids and people would jump off the playground slide or skip school because “you only live once”, right? Well, while the childlike method of embracing this sentiment wasn’t always… ideal, the message is.

You really only live once. And in a world with so much to learn, explore, and experience, I’ve always been at odds with the idea that there is too much to do, and yet, not enough time to do it all. Growing up, every subject has been my favorite at one time or another, and I think that cuts to the heart of my lifestyle. There is too much to learn and do. The only solution is to try to do as much as I can and enjoy as many moments as possible.

Learning leads to growing: This is something I’m sure will be featured in many articles to come, but this summer really showed me an astonishing correlation. For as my workload increased, so did my personal growth.

This summer was by far the busiest summer (yet!). While I did what most people (including myself at that time) deemed impossible, I also had the most fun, made a ton of memories, and most importantly grew exponentially as a person.

By taking such a wide range of classes, I found I was able to navigate the ups and downs of each adventure quickly (I had to) and detect patterns in my lifestyle and personality. This allowed me to learn to adapt to a variety of situations quickly. From learning the basics of how I like to organize my work life and my social life (Believe it or not, I still had one!), this summer felt like one logic puzzle after another. A logic puzzle in a game show. During the speed round. And after getting through the show, I won more than I could have expected.

Saw two roads converge: Structure met creativity and they became best friends. As someone who loves planning, organizing, and general structure, I loved spending so much time writing that I learned to see the outlined story in my mind. I loved speaking in Spanish so often I began thinking in a different language. Loved spending hours designing my online planner, reading articles and racing down the hallway to share with the closest person I could find how X happened, and because of Y this explains the outcome of Z. On top of this beautiful structure, of constantly checking, updating, and rearranging my summer, came the magic of creativity that allowed me to do so. For it was creativity that allowed me to think about requesting to take two classes at a faster pace (and finish early to take more classes), to think outside the box about when I would do my work when I suddenly had to get my wisdom teeth out, and even how to begin another essay in a matter of minutes of ending the previous one and quickly construct a new theme, outline, and message. This summer I felt the beauty of these two sides meeting and after living through such an experience, I realized I couldn’t let it go.

Time passes anyway: Summer comes to an end. So does college. Before you know it, the chapter ends and you have to pick up a new book to read (and if life is the story… you have to enter your sequel). This feeling, of knowing no matter what I do, I will reach the next section of my life made me realize I should dedicate myself fully to whatever is at hand, and to doing what brings me joy. Because the next chapter will come. Someday, this one will end. And, just like when you read a book, no one will ask about the details or for you to spoil the plot or even the ending. Instead, they ask

“Did you like it? Was it good? Would you recommend it?”

This summer, while crazy, chaotic, stressful, eye-opening, and everything in between, I love that, just like my favorite books…

I can say yes, it changed my life.





Thought Catalog

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  1. Rachel Horne says:

    What a beautiful analogy of your summer 2018. You were happy, excited and busy this past summer. However, you thrived, grew and learned so much. This summer shaped you for your future endeavors and you managed all the challenges and accomplishments that you endured. I am so proud of you!

    1. Sarah says:

      Thank you!!

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