In order to achieve a goal you need to have a motivation, right? Whether that is money, a job, the next stage of your life or personal satisfaction; it’s different for everybody. Depending on how much you care about the motivation, you’ll put pressure on yourself to achieve. This pressure is often just what you need to kick start you into achieving your goal, however, sometimes, when it gets too much, it’s fatal.

I have fixed this idea into my head that everybody expects me to achieve everything I set out to do.  This is rubbish. Firstly, most people don’t actually care. Secondly, those that do are going to love you the same whether you do or do not achieve what you set out to do. Personally, I wish I had learnt this years ago, not so that I could have slacked off and not cared about my goals, but so I could have realised that my goals were just that; MY goals. It doesn’t matter what my friends thinks, what my parents think or what anybody else thinks. I’ve found that they’d rather see me happy than like I have been for the past 6 months and achieving everything I wanted to.

All along the pressure that I thought was coming from everybody around me was actually coming from me and my need for everything to be perfect. Unless I knew every detail of a course and had done all past papers, I wouldn’t consider myself ready for an exam.  If I hadn’t practiced every waking hour or couldn’t play a piece perfectly then I didn’t consider myself ready for a concert. If everything wasn’t in a place in my room then it wasn’t tidy. Little did I realise that knowing everything didn’t stop an exam containing a question I couldn’t answer, the imperfections in a live performance was what made it so special and most importantly…my room was never going to be classed as tidy!

There is nothing wrong with striving for everything to be as good as it can possibly be but nothing in life is perfect and it never will be. There isn’t enough time in the world for everything to be made perfect and there certainly isn’t a reason for you to put pressure on yourself to try. That is a fact.

So in my second year of Chemical Engineering I’ve learnt that by applying pressure you can transform work energy into any other type of energy you like, that you can often blame a rounding error for a slightly wrong answer and that you can assume everything is ‘perfect’ or ‘ideal’ but it never quite is.

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