At any phase of life, if you are asked to weigh in the good things about that phase vs the bad, it is never an easy task. It’s always, ‘oh, I had that but damn, we never got that when we were young/old’. As a child you have no responsibility. You get to do whatever you want (almost) but then your parents never let you have that one candy you love all the frigging time. As a teenager, you want to do so much but you just never have that amount of money to do it. As an adult, you never really have the time to do that thing that you would really love to do. ‘That thing’ just lingers with us on every step of our lives and sometimes it starts to get really frustrating.
I think I wouldn’t be wrong in saying this time right here is the best time of my life in my head. I feel free/happy I do what I want and when I want with mostly no strings attached. But at the same time, if I think of weighing it in it starts all over again. I never cared much for school or any formal means of education and even cared less for authority. Not that I would mess with authority, I never did – I was too much of a wuss to do that – but I never liked it. Similarly, I was never bad at studying. I was pretty darn good at it actually, but I never liked it. But most of all, I wasn’t cut out for all the drama and politics a college/university brings. Clubs, societies, president, popular folks, not so popular ones, the geeks, the social retards and the nice guys. It was a big mess I never understood and never wanted to.
I just couldn’t wait for it to be over and then it was. Relief at last. No worries about waking up early for class, to do work or projects, worrying about grades and girls. No more doing things because you were supposed to do them. No more attending things just to keep up appearances. And the best thing for me was I knew I would start earning, have money, get out more. Have more camping trips; do a lot more travel.
Life was good, couldn’t be more perfect. The drama was over, I started working for a startup. Small tight team, no drama no politics, a big vision, the thrill and excitement of going somewhere and doing something. It was all surreal and I was loving every bit of it, from going to work at whatever time I woke up to knowing I was doing something awesome. I had the weekends to myself; time to camp, chill out and do whatever.
Sadly, that didn’t last long. While you are having a ball, mostly people are moving out of the country, getting married, studying more, working their way up on the corporate ladder or are high on some new drug. Steadily and not so slowly, your social circle starts to shrink. You find yourself staring at a computer screen more than you would have wanted to. You have the resources and you just might have the time, but the company isn’t there anymore. And then you realize how important was that one ingredient.
Socializing becomes harder and harder as you grow up, it’s not as easy as ‘dear class, we have a new friend in our class today, every one clap for him’ . Every one has their tight comfort zone and it’s hard to get them out of it.
Sadly, I have yet to find a solution to the current situation but I do have some tips for the ones starting off:
- Meet as many people as you can when you’re in college/university. Make good friends, be careful in choosing friends but know everyeone and everyone should know you. Join clubs/groups of people who are interested in things you are interested in. Keep in touch with them, say hi every now and then.
- Often you will think, why should I make the effort, why do I need that. I’m fine like this, that is perfectly fine if you are a introvert and ok with it. Otherwise, well, try to keep people that care about you close. And the ones that don’t, well, keep them in the grid. This will go a long way.
- Don’t be afraid of being made a fool of in college, no one will remember this. But you will remember the good times you had.
- Divide your time properly, between your social life, your studies and your personal projects. Don’t let one of them take most of your time.
(Edited by : Nuzhat Saadia Siddique , not because she is awesome because I suck at writing )