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Life Hack: Multiple Activities – Alphonse Schoeneberger

As a junior nursing major at the University of Jamestown my life is upside down; the papers, multiple tests per-week, studying for those multiple tests, re-demos (re-demonstrations of nursing skills), and clinicals, I usually do not know which way is up and which is down. Plus I am a member of the UJ concert choir and the pianist for the choir, VP for Alpha Chi, VP for Nursing Student Association (NSA), ARD of Watson, National Resident Hall Association (NRHA) president, playing piano for random events around campus, maintaining a social life, tutoring, and trying to get enough sleep so that I do not go insane.

I laugh as I write this because I think of the memes that say like eight different things and then it says “pick three,” but here I am picking six or seven of the things. Let me get this straight right off the bat; I am not bragging about how much I do; my writing this is to shed some light of how to be in multiple activities, not go insane, and be able to get some sleep (key word “some”). I am Alphonse Schoeneberger and here are some life hacks for being involved in multiple activities.

1. Find what you love and do it.
You need at least one thing you love doing to help keep you sane. For me piano is my one thing I absolutely love doing which helps keeps my life centered and focused. I am also lucky that all the things I am part of I enjoy doing. Not to say that one could not throw in an activity that was not their favorite and still be able to do it, it would make it more difficult though.

2. Find some time to do what you want to help relieve stress.
For example I play piano to unwind and I work out with a friend daily. I have learned this the hard way. Like the old saying goes “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” You will burn out if you do not find at least one stress reliever, trust me it has happened to me two times, and let me say, burning out is not fun. It also takes time to recover from a burn out. Some signs of burn out are; constant fatigue, mild depression, hopelessness, irritability, and anger. So please listen to this one; find a stress reliever. I do not care if it is video games, yoga, or taking a nap, find it and do it. I don’t want you to have to go through burn out.

3. Be spiritual in whatever form that it takes for you.
Whether that is Christianity, Buddhism, Muslim, or if you find it in nature. It helps me so much to be able to ask God for help and courage to do all the tasks I need to accomplish in each day. It also is nice to be able to put struggles in my life that I have no control up to God (this is another way to relieve stress). I highly suggest you find something to be spiritual in (which is not the same as being religious).

4. Surround yourself with awesome friends.
This can include friends, family, teachers, clergy people and so on and so forth. Having others that you can trust your deepest secrets (thoughts and emotions) with, is key to my sanity or at least what is left of it. To have a friend to hug or vent to after a long day is so refreshing. Another point to this is to make sure you have no toxic relationships. When you already have such a large amount of stress already from being involved in so much, you do not need any negativity from others.

Some may say that I have over-stretched my abilities and say I should focus on one thing and stop all others. Yes I will agree some weeks I am really busy and feel stretched thin, but I would not trade my life for the best piano on planet earth. I feel there is merit in being involved in as many different activities I am in; I mean why else come to a private liberal arts school right? Being as involved as I am has made me able to make many friends and strong allies throughout my three years at U of J.

I hear many say that UJ is like high school and I would have to disagree with that; yes it is small but it is what you make it. I have made such strong relationships with teachers, faculty, and students that I am at least daily checked up on to make sure I am still doing well (which is a good idea because I feel one lab accident away from becoming an evil genius . . . lol).

My parting comments to juniors, sophomores, freshmen, and incoming freshmen are; find something you love and get involved. It is never too late to get involved in activities. Being involved will make you meet new friends outside of your normal friend group; it will also add so much meaning to your life. It has for mine. It is possible to be involved in as many activities as I am (and be a nursing major at the same time).

Remember to find things you love, and activities that will reduce stress. Be spiritual in some way, and surround yourself with awesome friends.

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Posted:March 4, 2016

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