In Defense of… Calling it Quits

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Bwog continues to carry its tradition of sticking up for things that everybody loves to hate. From New Jersey to the PE requirement, we make sure that no underdogs go unprotected. In our latest In Defense of…  feature, Molly Andrews highlights the value to calling it quits.

Finals. That awful time of year when it feels like no matter what you do, more work crops up. It’s a circumstance we are all very familiar with here at Columbia. On more than one occasion, we have let a final project sit for so long that the once grand window of time until the due date has shrunk immensely. So what’s the protocol? Get some type of caffeine enhancement—preferably a coffee or Red Bull, plunk down in a library seat and get to it.

Whether it’s writing a paper, studying for a final, or organizing a final presentation, the pain of accomplishing the task never gets any easier until you stop thinking about doing it and actually do it. However, sometimes it’s just too late—the caffeine has left your system and your eyes simply can’t keep the curtains of your eyelids from closing. Last call—do you will yourself to open them and keep chugging along or simply accept the fact that you’ve done all you can do? Personally, I think the latter. There comes a time when no matter how hard you try you just don’t register any of the information you are trying to cram into your memory or you just can’t articulate the argument of your essay that we, as Columbia students, are all so capable of doing. So friends, when you reach that crucial point, and it’s just not sinking in no matter what you try, hit the pillows instead of the books! It’s worth your time to get some rest than to attempt to trick your mind into believing that staying up all night will enhance your performance. It’s time to call it quits and accept the fact of the matter—you did all that you could do.

Surrender Flag via Wikimedia Commons

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  1. Anonymous

    I have the sudden urge to listen to some Aimee Mann right now...

  2. CC '13  

    Giving up needs to be a more accepted option and the fact that its not on this campus is one of the reasons why we have such an unhealthy attitude here. Giving up knowing that you've tried and that you've given it your all is not a bad thing; it's human. I just wish people understood that instead of becoming lifeless automatons in the library, chaining caffeine. You don't have to live like that. As long as you've given it you're best, that's all you can do. And no, you're best isn't studying to that unhealthy, unhealthy degree.

    • Anonymous

      The university doesn't cause or encourage this attitude. Any professor or TA I have ever talked to is happy to give extensions, help you in office hours, potentially reschedule exams, etc. They get it. And no professor or adviser cares if you take, say, a lighter course load, or an easy class or two once in a while. In fact, I think the exact opposite is true.

      People at Columbia have created this environment for themselves, and while it drives them crazy it also makes them feel good about themselves, and probably gives them a reason to live. If they talk about "how much work they have" they feel good about themselves; it's just further validation that they're somehow better than their state school peers. It's like high school striving all over again.

      • Anonymous

        this article is a perfect example of that 'feeling good by talking about how much work' i have mentality rampant among columbia students. the day before finals is when you should be out playing frisbee or sleeping with the semester and you'll feel more happy and rested. unhealthy study habits CAN be mitigated. please checkout http:// calnewport. com/blog/

  3. Oh lawds  

    Aki Terannoying sent out a link to the New Junior Bureaucrat Initiative (sorry, the Student Wellness Project). Result: "Page not found."

    There's some sort of irony here, but I just can't put my finger on it.

  4. Anonymous

    Or this one:

    Uncomfortably befitting my feelings towards (thesis) research right now.

  5. boh

    it's never too late to quit

  6. Karim

    This isn't a defense of calling it quits, it's a defense of sleep. I was hoping to read something talking about dropping out, moving somewhere quiet, and tending farm or working at some menial blue-collar job where you wouldn't be too intellectually drained by the end of the workday to think what ever you wanted whenever you wanted.

  7. Don'y worry...

    you're definitely not the only privileged college student who romanticizes physical labor. (I'm one of them too).

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