College is a funny kind of animal. If you're like me, you came from a high school experience that had set you up sort of. You spent those four high school years really forging a path that you were just so certain was "yourself." I cultivated obsessive standards and compulsive behaviors and expectations of greatness, all so rudely knocked down after spending a semester back at the bottom of the totem pole. And that's hard.
But it was a place and period for reevaluation as well. From there, some days would work like clockwork, all the pieces clicking into place so that there was time for a coffee and a chat in the bottom of Decker. And some days were dashing out the door in pajamas, exhausted from studying the night before (which, of course, what I actually mean, was staying up way too late watching reality TV marathons with friends, textbooks open before us, but not being read), and sheepishly nodding to the professor as you interrupted the lecture he was already at least 15 minutes into.
If there was an important lesson that I learned at Anderson University, it was that there are both kinds of days and that excellence can be found in both. Just like I had to start over, a freshman once again trying to sort out her place, each day had a reset button. There was one for the day and one for the semester and one for the year, should you, like me, end up a college junior suddenly confronted with the fact that YOU ACTUALLY DON'T WANT TO BE A PSYCHOLOGIST.
Excellence isn't a laundry list of tasks completed perfectly and on time, nor is it a smoothed bedspread before leaving your apartment or being so on top of things that you find extra time in your day. Sure, all of those things are truly excellent and they'll make you feel excellent. But the sort of excellence I learned, the sort of excellence that Anderson University taught me, was that we are made to do something and when we apply ourselves and give grace to ourselves, the pieces of an excellent life come together and we can do that something well.
Continue reading Sarah's reflections on her blog at www.sarahannnoel.com
Anderson University is a private Christian university of about 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology.