Wednesday, October 20, 2010

A life worth leading.

Let’s find the sunny side of men,
Or be believers in it;
A light there is in every soul
That takes the pains to win it.
Oh/ There’s a slumbering good in all,
And we perchance may wake it;
Our hands contain the magic wand;
This life is what we make it.

- Unknown

This is it, our one chance. Our "15 minutes of fame" in the grand scheme of things. Our brief stint on earth here is just a grain of sand on the vast shores of the earth. Yes, it's depressing to think that we are so minutely small when compared to well, everything, but think of how big a difference just one tiny small thing can make. All it takes is a little grain of sand in a paper-cut to make you say ouch or a drop of pen ink on a white blouse to make you notice it. This is it - this life what we make it. We can just as easily be massive wastes of space or we can just as easily smile at a passer-by. I think sometimes people get overwhelmed by the term leadership or concepts of leadership; they think they have to become a successful CEO or president of a sorority to gain the title of "leader", but it's easier than you think. Our hands contain the magic wand, what are you going to do with yours? Something as simple as sitting down at the end of the day in your thinking chair and reflecting on the last twelve hours is "leadership"; by actively delving into your soul and going over the day and setting new goals for the next day, you are taking a pro-active step in being a better person, student, friend, lover, so on. Leadership doesn't have to be an intricate process comprised of committees and long meetings and hours in a soup kitchen.... setting goals for the next day and doing everything you can to achieve them (even just doing two loads of laundry) will help you get into the right mindset to be a better person. By doing the little things, you can conquer the bigger things. We're all in this together, let's find the sunny side of men; let's realize our own and others' potential.


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Role Conflicts

Role Conflict - When compliance with one role requirement may make it difficult to comply with another, the result is role conflict. At the extreme, two or more role expectations are mutually contradictory.

College. Primarily to achieve higher education, but more often used to "expand as a person" (as well as sometimes expand one's mind on um... experimental substances). In 2010, students go to college not just to learn, but also to meet new people, experience new parts of the country, develop a drinking habit and simply get away from their parents and hometown. But while students are losing their parents and "lame" hometown stigmas, are they also losing themselves? College is confusing; balancing your inner self with shallow surface-obsessed Greeks (sorry to stereotype.. another concept we talked about... but it's unfortunately one that's rather true at UK) is difficult; at the end of the day, the person we see in the mirror isn't the person we've known for two decades. While we want to be good girlfriends and boyfriends to the person we left back home, we also want to meet new people of the opposite sex (perhaps not for romantic relationships, but for the sake of meeting new people) and an inner conflict arises. Also, while we want to be good friends and go out on Monday nights because it's a friend's birthday, we also want to get an "A" on that exam that comes at 9am the next morning. Maybe we were soccer stars in high school and maintained physical fitness simply because of all the practices and games, but we're not playing collegiate sports so we gain the "freshmen 15"; how do we maintain our fit selves with a pizza-eating beer-drinking self? Just thinking of all of these double-lives can make a person have a panic attack. Role conflicts... meet balance, your new best friend. It's imperative that we strive for harmony in our college lives, or the scale is going to tip too far in one direction and your world will come crumbling down (and by crumbling down I mean, put on academic probation, go up a dress size, break-up with your partner). While it's absolutely vital to experience "college" and meet those new people, order pizza at 2 am and form new relationships, it's also just as important to limit oneself. While you meet new people, don't forget your established relationships. While once in awhile it's okay to stay up late and pig out with your friends, don't make it a weekly thing. Don't compromise things like your health, your family and your older friends just because your in a new environment; your health, family and friends is what got you to college, and it's what will keep you there.