Finding Meaning and Yourself

As most college students around this campus look toward another quarter of school, most undoubtedly hit the essential question: What am I going to do with my life?
The old year has gone and the new year has come, yet the question still stands.
Either it is a pure coincidental chance that many of the college students I meet are completely clueless on what they want to become, or the very realistic possibility that we are not really as mature as we think we ought to be.
The paradoxical nature of wanting to become something yet not fully understanding the road needed to get there presents itself to be quite an interesting ride. Instead of facing this college experience with disdain and malice, look upon this experience as a time to grow and learn from the things that you could not have experienced anywhere else.
With this advice, I cannot simply just admonish the reader without giving some general direction the reader must be headed.
First, understand everything to have a reason.
We live in a world that has order and meaning. Even when the world seems to be in chaos, there is still order governing this universe. This means that when there are classes you have to go to, papers you must write, remember that the time will only be momentary.
Your life will not always be this hectic. So breathe, and just try to get through this period of wildness with a clear and conscious mind that ‘it will be over soon.’
Second, find something that you excel at.
If this talent means to go out and play the guitar, then do it. Many people are usually ‘heard’ because they excel in an area. If you have a talent, then quickly identify it and expand and mature it. This might be the very charm that could pay off all your college debts.
Third, do it the best you can.
Let nothing hinder you from approaching that goal. Have a steady and clear goal that is certainly attainable.
Let it not be too simple of a goal that there is no worth in pursuing, but a goal that would certainly put some strain and pain, ultimately making it worthwhile to pursue. Do not sabotage other people’s work or hurt a fellow colleague to reach these goals, e.g. high GPA. It means to know that the only person that can hold you back is you.
Another important reminder that all students should have: This is college and around the nation, there are just as many hard-working, if not much harder-working students than you. Competition is always the game that we need to play in order to win big, but let that not distract you. Instead, just relax.
Although it may be hard to digest with words that seem to be the antithesis of the goal of overcoming and being successful in college, but those are the solemn words of truth.
We all are hard-pressed with workloads, some with jobs, and some even with families. Why make it that much harder by constantly reminding yourself that the person next to you in class is just another opponent that you would have to get rid of? This approach will only end in painful ulcers and large medical bills.
Learn to enjoy the college experience, even if saying it is easier than having it done, by not worrying about other students. Once again, the only real competitor that you will always have is you.
And some final words to leave with you.
Do not let the things of the past distract you from your current aims.
Do not worry about the things that you failed to do, but rather look forward to the things that you must do.
When it is hopeless, keep striving until you know for yourself that it can never be done. But until that finally settles in your mind, then keep on pressing ahead. Do not move to the right or the left, but go on straight ahead knowing where the goal is and how you must reach it.
Never lose faith but always believe that you could do it through the help of others and God.
Live each day and live each day as if it was your last. Do not look toward tomorrow but look toward today. This would surely make your life worth living for.

Brian Baek is a third-year biological sciences major.