Stories From The Arch:
Chronicles of a Mac Student
With my plans for life after graduation still up in the air and the extreme cold temperatures last week, I'm am finding it difficult to focus on the present and have instead been staying at home as much as possible daydreaming about the future and warmer weather.
My barrier at times has been myself and not believing in myself – I think it’s the biggest barrier you can have. So many other people can believe in you or can tell you that you can do something, but if you don’t believe it yourself then that will hinder you the most. I am a very realistic person and I look at statistics. I always think, “I can’t do that.” If you’re trying to reach a goal, then you can’t tell yourself that you can’t reach a goal without even trying. It’s good to have a back-up plan, but it’s not good to be so fearful that you just accept that your back up plan is going to happen.
I’ve heard of this saying where it’s like, it’s not the fact that you think about the future that makes you anxious, it’s the fact that you’re trying to control it that makes you anxious. I treat the future as something that’s exciting. It doesn’t necessarily have to be something negative. Eventually, what’s going to happen is going to happen. Uncertainties help you grow as a person. I mostly think in a positive sense. There’s a lot of things that are unknown – there are going to be times when you’re overwhelmed and where things can go wrong and you’re not going to want to go in that direction. There is no way to control it and it will only add to your stress and anxiety. Everyone goes through hardships – just be optimistic about the future. Uncertainties make it exciting. Validate yourself. Love yourself.
As a student in my final year facing a lot of uncertainty, I really enjoyed participating in this project because it reminded me to be more open to unplanned events and opportunities. I was also able to learn so much from interviewing students and reading the interviews even if I did not know them personally and there was a part of each student’s story that resonated with me. It has made me realize that the importance of taking a moment to have meaningful conversations with friends and peers at university, because you never know what you’ll learn from their stories.
After five incredible years as a both a student and employee of McMaster University, I knew that I was craving an adventure even though the thought of leaving the Mac community behind sounded like an awful decision; however, I knew that travelling was something that I wanted to do. When my contract job ended, I recognized that I wasn't committed to anything and had no actual excuse for why I shouldn’t go.