We know this time of year is intense. There are flyers, emails, and Facebook posts about all kinds of events. When you are buried in final deadlines, it can be hard to think about attending anything. If you haven’t done so already, below are a few reasons why you should consider going to a UW end of year event. It’s worth it on many levels. Plus, you deserve it!
Celebrate being present. Graduate school is more like a marathon with obstacle courses than a sprint. We can get so caught up in the stress of everything we need to get done, that we either forget — or don’t realize — that it is possible for each of us to slow down and decrease the pressure. Between classes or meetings, take slow, deep breaths. Arrive 15 minutes early to your next appointment to reduce feeling stressed out. And as Kyla Minguez recommends in The Importance of Slowing Down, “Rushing makes us stressed, causes us to overlook important details of our lives, and fuels egocentrism… Take some time to wait between tasks. Drink a glass of water, watch the sky… whatever you need to do, just relax.” And don’t underestimate the power of just showing up for someone; your presence can make a huge difference.
Celebrate milestones. This can apply to everyone — from those of you who are graduating in just a few weeks to those of who you are still working toward your degrees next year — recognize and reward yourself for each step you have taken toward completing your degree. No one else is going to do this except you. Completed your first year in your grad program? Take yourself out to dinner (and invite a peer or friend or two). Wrote one sentence, paragraph, or page of your doctoral dissertation? Go camping for the weekend, because we know the sheer amount of concentration and determination it takes to even write one sentence of your dissertation. Set up an informational interview with a professional whose job mirrors your career interests? Go ahead, put your phone on silent and stream your favorite TV show for several hours. However you decide to reward yourself, enjoy it!
Celebrate in community. From departmental to university-wide ceremonies, we encourage you to consider the positive aspects of attending end-of-year events. Why? 1) Being around people can help you feel less isolated and can get you out of your head. 2) Related to the first point, you’ll never know what potential friendships or professional connections you’ll make if you don’t go. 3) Depending on the event, stay for as little or as long as you want. 4) Last but not least, there’s a strong chance you’ll be able to enjoy free food and refreshments!
Again, we hope you take some time to participate in one of several end-of-year celebrations across our tri-campus communities at the University of Washington!
Core Programs Team