Putting Stress into Perspective

Students after Mass

Putting Stress into Perspective

By: Marissa Le Coz ’17

 

As any Dartmouth student can tell you, the atmosphere at the College is a very busy and frantic

one. Due to the accelerated ten-week term, we’re constantly being bombarded with papers,

midterms, and problem sets. I know that the past week has been academically stressful for a lot of

people, myself included, as we were in the thick of midterms.

While I don’t find academically stressful times particularly pleasant, I find them quite beneficial

for my faith life. I think that stress, while it is a hassle, brings a lot of important faith-related

matters to the fore, matters that I probably wouldn’t ponder if I were completely complacent with

my life.

I think that one natural question that comes up for people under academic stress is, “Why am I

doing this?” When I’m not too stressed, assignments just become a sequence of due dates to

check off the list, and I don’t put much direct thought into what greater purpose my studies could

serve. Stressful academic times are a great opportunity to remember that you are studying to serve

God. You’re studying to develop your God-given gifts that will give you the tools you’ll need to

fulfill His plan for your life.

Times like midterm week can also bring up the question, “Why am I stressed?” At face value, the

answer seems obvious. But it’s a very interesting moment to assess how much you let grades and

academics define you. It’s also a convenient time to put things back into perspective and

remember that eternal life is of far more importance than grades. Sure, you should work hard in

school, but it’s beneficial to remember that grades aren’t everything.

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