I have found trouble in seeking a meaningful life. I don't think I am alone in saying that the pandemic has upended my sense of being, even despite the great time which has passed so far. I had a clear definition for who I was, but that definition was overthrown in the absence of others, in the wake of true social connection.
Now I believe part of this is due to the ever-approaching threat of college admissions. Many folks my age seem to have undertaken fake activities in order to boost their resume, and I am no different. The number of (mostly) useless skills I have learned over the past year is large. But there is certainly value in useless skills. Take, for example, a comparison of me and a friend of mine. This friend was just commended in an award competition for his writing, but it was something he created genuinely. He grew his skill and passion for writing, culminating in a true book. Now, this is something I have emulated (hopefully) successfully, but I want to note many other activities here. I learned Blender, a 3d design software, when I really had no desire to. And when I say that "I learned," I really mean more that I tried and quickly grew bored.
So what is the difference? The difference, as I see it, is that one is genuine and one is fake. The genuine one, the passion of my friend (and I) of writing, is a personal thing. I have no doubt that he did not write his book for this competition, and certainly not for college, but out of a genuine desire to express himself. But I never wanted to learn Blender for the creativity instilled in it (for it is an amazing program, but I wasn't interested in what it could do) but instead for the name, the shock value of the program. If I could say to college admissions that "I learned Blender," they would surely commend me.
But would they? From what I understand, college admissions teams look at an individual's true connection to their activities. I never sought Blender as a tool, just as a name, and that would never be rewarded in an admissions department. So as a quick tip to any high schoolers like myself, fearing the college application process, just remember that what they want is a meaningful connection to what you do.
Which goes hand-and-hand with leading a meaningful life. It is thing easier said than done, as most are, and I merely want to add my take on the subject in what is already an oversaturated market.
But unfortunately, it is getting late. That will have to wait until tomorrow.