Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2296928-College-Stress
by Coco
Rated: E · Editorial · Educational · #2296928
Stop worrying about college. Written in 2020
Waking up in the morning was hard. A long day usually started with my alarm, a sound that would haunt me in my dreams like nails on a chalkboard. After frantically slapping my phone, I would often drift into a fantasy land of thought: Can I afford to sleep for five more minutes? What shoes should I wear today? Most importantly, what is stopping me from dozing off and slipping away into yet another vivid dream in my cozy bed? The answer often bore the wrath of my mother, but after I waved goodbye to her at the Shenzhen airport and journeyed to the other side of the globe, the answer became less clear. As an international boarder studying in New York, my motto was always “work harder than you did yesterday.” My days usually involved intense AP courses, stressful academic competitions, demanding sports practices, and hours upon hours of endless preparation for tests and projects. Sometimes, when looking at my calendar for the week, I would ask myself: What is all of this for?

About 61% of teens aged 13-17 state that they are under considerable pressure to produce good grades; this percentage easily increases for those who feel pressure to look attractive or simply fit in. In our modern-day society filled with peer competition and judgment, the adolescent years can be especially challenging. Young teens live in a culture that tests new limits like never before, and the pressure to get into a good college has become overwhelming.

With workloads stacked as high as mountains, students find themselves spending every available minute studying, giving up classes they love for high-level “important courses,” and focusing less on the true meaning of life: relationships. High school is a once-in-a-lifetime experience; after listening to older people around me, I realized that it is a time people always look back upon. Although these years make up only a small portion of life, they have a significant impact on the kinds of people we become. Friendships help mold who we are, trying new things grow our passions for the rest of our lives, and high school is the last years we could still be kids. Because of this, it is important to cherish our high-school experience as it is happening. We shouldn’t pull our hair out and live in constant stress for the next AP Calculus exam, but search for meaningful conversations, meet new people, and develop the social skills we need for our future life.

Puberty is already one of the biggest mysteries of humankind, and the fact th0061t teenagers feel it necessary to add ten AP-courses on top of this complex and confounding time of change is daunting. The journey of growing up is complicated enough without the pressure of college admissions, and while higher education signals an important landmark in one's life, it is indisputably just the beginning. What is important is that in looking back after 50 years, we will have endless stories to share with the people we love and care for. Remember, a good college does not mean success, a happy life does.

© Copyright 2023 Coco (leo760 at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
Writing.Com, its affiliates and syndicates have been granted non-exclusive rights to display this work.
Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2296928-College-Stress