Hi.

Do you ever feel like crap?

...Yeah, me too.

Now that I am in college, the amount of commitments, homework, responsibilities, etc. are piling up. And with that, my level of stress and frustration is piling up. There is a pretty direct correlation between the two.

For me, stress and frustration usually stem from a couple of things:

Failure

There have been quite a few ways that I have failed and continue to fail. Sometimes it has to do with my job, sometimes homework, and sometimes I simply let someone down. It makes me feel stupid and annoyed at myself. Failure = not good.

Procrastination

If you’re perfect and never fail at things, then maybe you can relate to my procrastination. Often times I make a little schedule or plan of what tasks and homework I’m going to accomplish throughout the day. Almost always, I fail to complete most of the items on the list. This makes me extra frustrated, especially when I stay up till 3 a.m. finishing (or even just starting) my work. Procrastination = very not good.

MISSING SLEEP

I HATE MISSING SLEEP. And yet, I end up forcing myself to do it so often because of the previous point. When I miss sleep, I fall into a cycle of frustration. I miss sleep so I’m tired in class. Then I have homework that I can’t finish because I’m too tired. Then I have work that makes me more tired, and then I have to stay up doing the homework I couldn’t finish...

I don’t know about you, but I allow a lot of unnecessary frustration to build up.

It makes sense to be frustrated. Frustration helps us learn a lesson and take note of why we failed, driving us to do better. But often times, I see my frustration seep into other parts of my day where it steals moments of relaxation and joy. Recently, I have been learning that part of dealing with frustration is choosing to have a good attitude, despite all the unfinished pile of stuff that sits in the back of my mind.

After all of the effort I’ve put toward trying to be better at life, I've had to realize that I’m only going to get more and more frustrated unless I take a step back and relax. Instead of relying on my own abilities, I have had to learn to choose joy.

How does Blakey choose joy?

  1. Get the stress off your chest.
    One of the greatest aspects of being a student at Biola is that nearly everyone is willing to talk, especially about their problems. Talk with your roommate, classmates, etc. about your troubles. It can really help!
  2. Start your day well.
    You know that book that Christians read? Yeah, that’s the one –– the Bible. Getting up in the morning and reading God’s word has actually helped change the dynamic of my entire day. If you’re too tired to read, just wake up and listen to worship music or spend time in prayer. Maybe even just grab some coffee and relax for 20 minutes. How I start my day has had a huge impact on the rest of it.
  3. Take a nap.
    Seriously, sometimes I just need a good nap. Sometimes it’s just what you need.

Adjusting my attitude has led me to make it through my more stressful days, and has allowed me to find more joy and delight amidst the days that feel dull and dry.

I hope you can relate at least a little bit to my thoughts. COME TO BIOLA AND SAY HI.

Sincerely,

Blogger Blakey Bell