Breaking Your Bad Habits
At some point, you’re going to have to deal with your crippling FOMO.
By Payton Ramey, University of Central Florida
You’ve heard the expression since you were born, “You are your own worst enemy,” and it couldn’t be more true for university students today.
Everyone has goals. Some are seemingly insignificant, like finally cleaning the “champer,” while others take a lifetime to plan. Usually, these goals can go one of two ways. First, everything goes smoothly, and you check the box before moving onto your next to-do item. Or, more likely, the list keeps growing as your little goals continue to sit, untouched (me).
Regardless of which side you tend to lean toward, it’s become blatantly obvious that every student has, at some point, felt discouraged enough from lack of progress to drop out and become a stripper. Sometimes things don’t go the way you thought they would, but hey, c’est la vie.
When shit inevitably hits the fan, you want to be prepared. So, here are the top three self-sabotaging behaviors every student has and how you can finally leave them behind.
1. Timing Is Everything
Do you ever find yourself slowly delving into a world of forgetfulness? Do you become irritable and cranky at the smallest of inconveniences? Are you falling asleep at the wheel? If so, welcome to college.
Between attending classes, completing assignments and finding time to socialize, it’s easy to lose track of your once-healthy lifestyle of good sleep and perfect eating habits. And, while it may seem tempting to “catch-up” on sleep during the weekends, it’s also unapologetically screwing you over. Sleeping in feels great; that’s undeniable, but maintaining an inconsistent sleep schedule leads to some pretty devastating side effects.
I’m certainly not immune to the calling of a comfortable bed and a day of doing nothing, but sleeping in all day is a waste of time that only gives you a momentary sense of satisfaction.
Fix It: Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule can keep your body from being thrown out-of-whack on days that you honestly have no control over your environment. Try to set your alarms, both weekend and weekday, around the same time.
If you wake up at 10 a.m. during the week, try to wake up around 11 or 11:30 a.m. during the weekends. It may be hard at first, but once you have control over your schedule, you’ll probably be one of the only well-rested and productive students on campus.
2. Only Recognizing Success
Everyone reacts to failure differently; some take it as a personal attack toward their intelligence, while others simply laugh and carry on. Regardless, it’s imperative that every person takes the time to acknowledge both their failures and successes.
Failures are embarrassing, but they’re also inevitable. Maybe you don’t get the promotion you thought you would, or you fail the class that you assured everyone was an easy A. While it can be a huge blow to your ego, ignoring a setback only furthers feelings of resentment and inadequacy.
Fix It: Obviously, you don’t want to dwell on your failures, but you should at least acknowledge them, and one of the best ways to do that is to share your feelings with those around you.
By nature, I’m an introvert, so sharing feelings and emotions is a definite no-no for me. But, when I encounter a setback that’s totally and completely unplanned (when are they not though), discussing where I went wrong and what I can do to prevent the same thing from occurring again is a great way to encourage growth and success for future endeavors.
3. Not Loving Your Individuality
FOMO is a bitch. In the age of electronics and social-media galore, fear of missing out is an all-too-common occurrence.
When you open your phone, odds are you’re immediately bombarded with images and videos of your friend’s fabulous life of parties, booze and granite countertops. It looks like everyone around you is having the time of their life, while you’re sitting alone in your room crying and studying for a final you’re so obviously not prepared for.
Like anything else, FOMO affects a lot of people, especially college students, and it’s completely normal. It can come from a variety of places, most notably social media, but it’s important to remember that people tend to share only the best version of themselves online.
Fix It: Getting rid of FOMO can be a bit of a process, but understanding that these feelings of inferiority stem from internet lies is a great way to get started. Ask yourself these questions. Do you find yourself constantly going on Snapchat to see what other people are doing? Do you compare your lifestyle to that of the standard “Instagram hoe”? Are you on Facebook even when there’s no reason for you to be?
Odds are, all of that was a yes. Start by cutting off your social media time. Delete the apps from your phone, and dedicate hours during the day to simply enjoying your life. Slow down, and be mindful of how you’re spending your time; you’ll thank yourself later.
Over the course of a few years, I’ve worked toward letting go of some really shitty habits. And while it was a little bit of a bitch changing up such a big part of my routine, it has done miracles for both my social and academic life.
Getting to know your patterns of behavior is one of the easiest ways to get your life going in a positive direction. It may seem difficult to try to change habits that have gotten you through years of adolescent awkwardness, albeit somewhat strangely, but some things don’t work out forever.
Change is inevitable, and it’s usually a good thing because it means you’re adapting to a new environment. When you start identifying what does and doesn’t work for you, you can break down barriers and look past ideas that were holding you back.