As I write this, it is pouring outside. The thing about Cape Town weather is that it is unpredictable. I woke up to a respectable blue sky. Now all I see is grey…and lots of rain.
I unfortunately fell prey to the deceiving hint of blue and walked out of my room in pumps and two minimal layers of clothing. By 2 o’clock, I was drenched. As I was running through the rain holding my bag over head and avoiding as many puddles as possible, it occurred to me: I should have been prepared. I am now a veteran ‘Cape Townian’. I should have at least had an extra jacket just in case. I had always been prepared before, what happened today? I was disorganized that’s what happened!
In my defense, the past week has been crazy hectic. I’m talking tests, quizzes and a Lab exam to top it all off, from Tuesday till today. Infact, the running in the rain was to the said Lab exam (which didn’t go so bad, thankfully :D). But whatever the case, I should have remembered to have that handy jacket in my bag like I usually do. So whats my point?…Don’t get caught in the rain!
Life is of course always a gamble. Somedays its sunny and beautiful and you feel like you’re in control while others are like hurricane central; everything seems to up in the air and moving way too fast. I guess the best thing to do when the occasional disaster comes along; I’m talking horrendous test results, friend drama, a sudden bout of sickness and generally anything you DO NOT need in your life at that moment; is be prepared. Have a back-up plan so that when things get hectic, you know exactly what to do.
This is MY back-up plan. Its something I thought could apply to any situation I am personally in and hopefully you can apply to your life as well with a little tweaks here and there 🙂
- Pray. Praying always makes me feel better. Its the way I communicate with God and reminds me that at the end of the day, he’s in charge and will see me safely through whatever it is I’m going through.
- Know your limits. As they say, prevention is better than cure so know what you can handle on your plate. Don’t join too many societies on top of your academic work. Don’t make too many promises or plans that you end up not keeping. And definitely DON’T fool yourself into thinking you can pull an ‘all nighter’ when you know your body needs a minimum of 5 hours of sleep to function the next day (that’s something I found out the hard way).
- Have a partner in crime. Have a friend who will tell you when they see things going off the rails. If you haven’t been coping well academically, they’ll tell you to pull up your socks. If you think you can’t make it somewhere, know you can trust them enough to do what needs to be done without messing it up. Just remember to not always be on the receiving side; then he or she becomes your personal assistant and stops being your friend.
- Know what to expect. Always. I keep going back to academics because well, that’s my life right now but still: know your course requirements, know all your lecturers, tutors, teaching assistants etc. Know what the year looks like in terms of workload. Outside of the classroom; if you’re going to a new place to eat with friends or anything of that sort, Google it. Have a rough idea of the location. If you’re going for an interview, ask around on what kind of questions you’ll be asked. In general, do your research before you venture into unknown territory.
- DON’T PANIC. When things do get out of hand and trust me, they do, don’t panic. Sometimes its so easy to crack under pressure. Try to avoid this by putting yourself in a good space to handle the situation. A positive state of mind can go a long way. It can motivate you to take charge and be productive always. Plus, it just makes life a whole lot easier 🙂
So, next time you wake up and its raining (whether it be physical or figurative rain) don’t forget to take a deep breath, grab an umbrella (if its really raining) and figure out what to tackle first. Soon you’ll be back on track and ready to conquer life in no time at all. Like Mozart once said;
“The shorter way to do many things is to do one thing at a time”
Till next time,