Having gone half way across the country for my undergraduate education in Alabama, I thought that I had the whole “adjustment factor” under control. It seemed like moving to California would not be much different, especially since I was transitioning from one Seventh-day Adventist school to another. I thought I knew what I was doing. So I decided to shrug off the old voices of wisdom who warned to “avoid distractions!” But I quickly came to understand the saying “too many cooks spoil the broth.”
My pride was in thinking that it was okay to change all of the good study habits that I had developed in college (crazy right?). Growing to care for all of my new classmates, professors, mentors, and various other students, I wanted to listen to their advice. “Do such and such and you’ll be like John who was at the top of his class in ‘07’.” After much critical analyses, I agreed that the advice was pretty exceptional. Unfortunately, not all of it was exceptional for me.
So then it was one week before the exam hit. My heart raced as I attempted to readjust my adjusted study habits back to what worked for me. Mental roadblocks, long nights of study, knees worn out from prayers, phone calls from parents telling me to study more (and angry with myself knowing they were right!) encompassed the days before exams. All of it reached an emotional climax on the weekend before Day One of the four day test week.
Fortunately, God pulled me through this one. However, as I looked back I realized that it could have been a lot less stressful. For me, the most valuable information learned was actually something that I already knew: Sometimes, the biggest hurdles in life are the ones that we set for ourselves.