I had an entirely different post planned for today, but I have never been very good at sticking to my plans. Nevertheless, the other day I was talking to my friends about applying to MIT. Although I am not applying to MIT, because it is far beyond my reach, I read their short answer questions a while ago and my absolute favorite happened to be:
We know you lead a busy life, full of activities, many of which are required of you. Tell us about something you do simply for the pleasure of it.
I love this question because, amidst the stress of college applications, everyone forgets that not everything you do has to be just another gold star for your resume.
But I also wondered: what do I do simply for the pleasure of it? And I quickly rambled off a mental laundry list of my useless hobbies, from memorizing hardcore rap songs on my uke to doing rainbow makeup to exploring the Smithsonians to well… writing this blog. I think this happens to be my biggest high school accomplishment– I was able to keep my albeit useless hobbies intact despite the pressure of studying and college apps.
But don’t get me wrong, every extracurricular I did in high school I did because I truly enjoy it. There isn’t a single “resume stuffer” on any of my college apps.
Anyhow, there is always something special about doing something just for yourself– with absolutely no caveats.
When talking to my friends about this, I found that they weren’t all exactly sure of what they do just for the pleasure of it; however, I know for a fact they all have their own hobbies that don’t just don’t align with the typical parameter to qualify as a “hobby”. Hanging out with friends, spending Sunday mornings watching Netflix in bed, sketching dis-satisfactory doodles, even just listening to music and pondering the meaning of life can be you just “for the pleasure of it” hobby.
If you’re looking your life and thinking: wow do I do anything just for the pleasure of it? Then take a deep breath and remember that indulging yourself in the simple pleasures of life is not a crime; in fact, neglecting yourself and your mental health is much more dangerous.
At the end of the day, I’m not going to tell you how to live your life (not that it would make a difference), but if you aren’t doing anything to bring that extra bit of satisfaction to your life, you are missing out on an awful lot.
Nonetheless, take my beliefs with a grain of salt– just please take care of yourself.
love you alottle,