I have a bit of a historywithexistentialquestions. having long since struggled with the void that one must face once worldly desires are met. I have been fortunate enough to not have to worry about my survival, and, thanks to my education, not worry too much about employment or wages. I have achieved things that my peers strive towards, like a 4.0 GPA and recognition for my craft. I have experienced a relationship and know it's not the fairy tails that adults like to portray it as to young people.
These are trying times, and it's pretty clear to everyone that solitude can mess up your mental health. A surprising flip side is that I'm enjoying the calm tranquility of structured solitude. I can spend days without unwanted social contact, needless decorum and the stress that accumulates in my hopelessly introverted soul from it all.
I'm merely 20, a college student with not much life experience in the grand scheme of things. Still, it's remarkable just how much my perspective has changed in the past two years. These are the ten things I wish I could tell my high school self if time travel were a possibility:
Every person who has their basic needs met with time to spare will inevitably have a dreaded visit from existential crisis. Me being me, a padentic over-thinker, it came and stayed in the form of major depression. I was paralyzed from acting on my worldly goals until I could figure out why I must bother to do anything.
Thanks to the quarantine, I've been thrust into the shoes of a remote worker or an entrepreneur that must structure my own day. Gone is the set routine of commuting to campus, attending classes, and having dinner with friends. Now that I spend my whole day at most a few meters away from my bed, I've been relying on some new strategies for self-directed productivity.
Two things happened, and I'm feeling a desperate need to go offline by default.
First, I was learning how to use Linux, and it took a few days to troubleshoot network settings. That gave me a forced taste of a mostly offline lifestyle during which I only had limited cellular data. I was surprisingly productive and felt calm during these few days.
My favorite and most poignant speech about dreams and creativity comes from a harem anime con artist of all things.
Kaiki Deishuu: No matter who I talked to......none of them had any information that you had a hobby of [drawing manga]. That is how you obstinately hid those embarrassing creations out of our knowledge. You didn't tell anyone. In other words, that's because it's what you consider to be your true dream, right? Your real wish isn't something you tell others. Not even to god. You must be happy now that you're a god. You must be having fun. But it's not that you wanted to become a god, right?...... Not like you wanted to become happy. You wanted to become a manga artist, right? Then why don't you become one?
As someone who has academically excelled since a young age, the most difficult transition in college has been an acceptance in my mediocrity.
Korea's Obsession With Success.
I am the poster child of a success-driven society. I was raised in South Korea, a country with incomparable academic pressure. In primary school, I received special education for high-performing STEM students. Later in high school, I was my grade's top-performing competitive mathematician.