Editorial Staff: Move with patience and purpose


Editorial Staff

You can see it as you walk through the quad: droopy eyelids and ever-widening yawns; massive coffees and bottomless energy drinks; overflowing backpacks and too-full notebooks. You don’t need to expressly look for burnout to sense it everywhere.

Now, almost a third of the way through the fall semester, tests and papers are piling up.

Not only that, but Wake Forest is now operating at a pre-COVID level — socially, that is. Now, students are juggling going out three nights a week, searching for jobs, tackling 12+ credits, exercising, eating well, seeing friends, talking with family and participating in 30+ extracurricular activities. Oh, and sleeping. Whatever that means.

Perhaps most distressing: the schedule doesn’t appear to get any lighter next week. Or the week after that. Or — you guessed it — the week after that.

Take comfort in knowing this, though. You are painfully not alone. If you aren’t a little anxious all the time, are you even a Wake Forest student? Joking! Kind of. Truthfully, upperclassmen have some advantage here — they knew what was coming. For freshmen, though, these upcoming weeks can be especially trying. As all can attest to, the experience of being a first-year student comes with no shortage of challenges. For this year’s freshmen class, there’s another layer, too, as all sorts of struggles were further exacerbated by the pandemic.

Prior to this semester, a sizable number of students on our Wake Forest campus hadn’t stepped foot in a classroom for the better part of the past 24 months.

Transitioning back to in-person learning after spending so much time working in a remote capacity is an adjustment, and one that takes time. We could all benefit from being more patient with ourselves. Strive for excellence, but don’t let that pursuit consume your being. Showing compassion to yourself — taking the time to unwind when things start to feel overwhelming — goes a long way. If you’re constantly running at 1,000 miles per hour, you’re going to miss those moments that make the Wake Forest experience such a special one. 

When you need to, ask a friend for help or let your professor know what’s got you troubled; make the time to call the parent or friend from home you keep saying you’ll contact but never seem to get around to; keep things in perspective. Together, let’s continue on.