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Monday, June 27, 2016
Taking a Breather from College Admissions Essays
It's the summer before your junior year. You may have already taken the SAT and squeezed in a few perfunctory college visits. The end of high school is near, but still far off enough to stave total panic. Maybe your parents are on your case to get serious about researching colleges. Your guidance counselor may have sent you home with a pile of brochures and a notebook for jotting down essay ideas.
But it's summer. Why borrow worry from tomorrow? Why not be a kid for a little while longer?
Why, indeed-and yet, when it comes to writing, there is no better editor than time. I can promise you that I've written things late at night that sounded brilliant until I read them again in the morning.
Which is why-sadly, perhaps-I think this summer is an ideal time to start thinking about your essay. I realize I can't make you. Yet good writers and experienced college consultants frequently advise college hopefuls to start keeping a diary. You don't need to pour your heart out to the pages every night, but just jot down things that strike you at the time. Time tends to lend perspective to emotional highs and lows, and this measured reflection will surface in your writing.
The benefit here is that note-taking won't swallow your summer. On the contrary, it will help keep it fresh for you. Trust me-you won't remember half of it, and the other half, you'll remember wrong.
Ignoring responsibility just makes small tasks seem huge. Give your essay a little thought this summer, and then walk away from it. When used wisely, time is a powerful architect of change.
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