Facing my Fears#8 [14th August 2017]
Every year on 14th August the Student Gymkhana organizes a treasure hunt for the incoming freshmen. It is an event that I participated in the first year and helped conduct in my second and third years. As the treasure hunt goes overnight, it is fun to meet with the freshmen and make them do weird things for the next clue. Also it is generally fun to boss your juniors around. Being a part of the ELS(English Literary Society , which is involved in organizing the Treasure Hunt) for my entire time here at IIT Kanpur, I had taken part in organizing the Treasure Hunt in the past two years.
This year, I had a lot of things to do on the same day. Things that were important, but wouldn’t cause any problems if I postponed them. Hence I faced a choice ( if would have been really easy to choose if, let’s say I had some urgent work) whether to go to the Treasure Hunt or not.
Despite me liking the Treasure Hunt, I didn’t really feel excited about this year and the only reason that I wished to go was this mental itch. This anxiety that I will miss out on something( fear of missing out). All the other factors were stacked up against it. It didn’t seem rational to do,but still that anxiety; that fear wouldn’t let go. What if there’s something interesting and I miss out on that?
I decided not to go. Immediately after making this decision, I regretted it, thinking “I could have at least gone for an hour or so, I’m simply overthinking this”. Overthinking I clearly was, but still I wanted to go through with the experiment.
I engaged myself in the things that I was doing and slowly the mental itch began to subside. As I started to complete pending tasks, I started to feel better. Also, I could distance myself from the situation and get some perspective. “The treasure hunt was a small event and missing it was no big deal after all. Why was I worrying over it again?”
Well, aren’t our minds interesting? One moment it’s the end of the world, and the next it’s no big deal. And so it goes. Over and over.
tl;dr Didn’t attend an event. Nothing at all happened. Seems trivial now. Didn’t at that time.