There is a moment that occurs, in which passionate, committed people feel that they are disheartened and disconnected from what they are doing. Being a student at Mines, our moment, our burnout, is becoming exasperated with the education we are pursuing.
Burnout is not the simple result of putting in long hours, and it is different from just feeling tired. Burnout stems from a sense of ineffectiveness, or resentfulness of a place or situation. At Mines, this can happen anytime. However, there is a higher occurence during finals.
Such a rigorous and specific school attracts the kind of people looking for a challenge. There is a sense of empowerment in being able to accomplish something initially regarded as difficult or even impossible. However, we feel that so much of our character is built around getting a good grade in a certain class, our GPA, and our activities that fill blank spaces on our resume.
In a community of such students, you would be hard pressed to find someone who does not carry this mindset to some degree. However, over-reliance on the academic aspect of college carries the potential to manifest into a resentful and ineffective state of mind whenever the desired outcome is not obtained.
As Tyler Finamore—a personal trainer and chemical engineering student—elaborated, it is important to recognize the context of all of life’s activities; sometimes there are things we cannot control. It is imperative to weigh those things less heavily in the makeup of who we are.
So remember this during finals week: there is not a grade that defines you or a test score that changes who you are as a person. You are smart and competent and capable.
If you feel burnt out, take a break, go outside, stretch, make a snack, and remember who you are and what you can do. Follow your passion and know your potential. Find a stress outlet and be aware enough to understand when to utilize it.
You got this. Get it done and have a great summer.