The Pre-Admission Decision Jitters

I am a liar.

For weeks, I boasted that if I could just submit my applications, send them off into the universe and surrender my fate to the admissions teams, that I would feel better. I claimed that my annoying anxious attitude would dissipate, as I would transform from a burrito of stress into a beacon of acceptance and calm. My practices of being present, patient, and surrendering to the universe would resume, and I could let go of the crazed insecure persona that consumed me.

My promises intended to be true. I had every intention of returning to a version of myself that I recognized and respected. In fact, I hoped and prayed that this would be the case. Contrary to what some people may think, existing in a state of constant anxiety and stress is neither fun nor intentional. It is a terrible, miserable place for the mind to be and results in sleepless nights and consuming copious amounts of coffee and leftover Halloween candy. For the sake of my sanity and my waistline, it was of the utmost importance that the emotional roller coaster I was on end once my application submissions were complete.

But that is not the case. Whoops!

Now that my tenure as a “convert to pdf and upload” machine has come to a close, I find myself even more neurotic. I predicted that this might happen in a previous post, however I secretly hoped that it would not. With the knowledge that admission decisions for most of my schools are rolling, I find myself obsessively logging into the application portals every day, sometimes multiple times a day, to see if the status of my application has been updated.

But Myriah, won’t they send you an email and notify you when that happens? Yes, yes they most likely will. In fact, the University of Edinburgh has confirmed that fact in addition to the exact date that they will let me know of the decision. And yet, I log in every day, knowing very well that nothing has changed. I just can’t help myself.

I would like to think that this is all down to my pure excitement about potentially going to graduate school. This is something that I have dreamed about for years! Of course I would be eager. But the reality is, I am impatient, obsessive, and borderline hysterical. I have an intense need for certainty, and the fact that I do not know about this drives me up the wall.

In theory, knowing the decision date or range should bring me some comfort: the University of Edinburgh will let me know on November 15th, the University of St Andrews (with its rolling decision time of four to six weeks) by December, and LSE will begin releasing decisions in January. And yet, it does not bring comfort, or at least not enough to stop my compulsive tendencies.

In an effort to try and control and distract myself, I have increased and diversified my workouts, listened to more engaging audiobooks, found new YouTube channels to explore, and indulged in a few too many spoonfuls of Trader Joe’s pumpkin butter. I have listened to mindfulness exercises and guided meditations. I have written out ten page long manic rants in an attempt to “get it out of my system.” I have stress cried and screamed. And I have whined to my friends and family for more than they signed up for. So now, as I have exhausted all over options, I am turning to the blog to write about it here.

When waiting for something to happen, distractions are key. Diving into work, books, family matters, or campaigning for democratic candidates to try and flip the house for the midterm election (oh hello politics, how did you get here?); all are excellent methods and ones that I am currently practicing. If you also find yourself in a moment of uncertainty and waiting, know that you are not alone. And no, you are not crazy. Trust me, I make you look perfectly sane.


The Travelsmith

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