A year has flown by and the world has finally begun moving again. It was definitely a difficult year, one full of growth and newfound appreciation for the world. There were moments where I was completely unmotivated as zoom fatigue hit hard...but there were also moments with my family that I will forever cherish.
Academically, I learned that I took in-person classes for granted. I realized that I craved to be in a classroom setting because I loved the spontaneous conversation with my peers before and after class. I also realized that throughout the semester I struggled with burnout. I had to remember that this was something we were collectively going through together and that I needed to be aware that I was not alone in feeling those things. After a heavy fall semester I decided I needed a chance to take a break and give myself a simpler spring semester. I had to realize that it was okay to slow down and breathe.
Socially, I began to realize that with school draining my energy so much, I could choose who I wanted to prioritize and make time for. I began to take (good) care of myself and do things that I loved. This was mostly a lot of cooking, baking, or walking to the beach. I also started to incorporate moving into my weekly routine. I try to be outside more and make time for the gym. Not only is it good for my body, but makes me feel energized the rest of the day.
COVID-19 has taught me to treat others with kindness, because I don’t know what is going on in someone else’s life. Many have lost loved ones during the pandemic, or struggled with depression or anxiety but would never tell you. I have learned to be more understanding than ever before. I began to be gentler to those around me. The pandemic also taught me to be kind to myself and make sure that my mental and physical health is a priority. A priority that is of value.
I ask you to pause and take a deep breath.
Reflect on the past year.
Look around you and see that there are beautiful things all around.