Google’s definition of “serendipity”

Finding Serenity in Serendipity

By Chelyse Prevost
Web Content Contributor

Shortly after writing Sunday Scaries, I came to realize how ironic life really is. I was in a creative thinking class when my professor knocked me out of a vivid daydream about my other priorities while doing an exercise about our task management tendencies (yikes).

We discussed the pros and cons of over-anticipating tasks versus procrastinating them and voted on which one we experienced the most. Most of the class found it easy to believe that they were inherently procrastinators.

 Although I could relate, for the most part, I found it to be too big of a question to answer so simply.

In my head, I could only imagine the responsibilities we’ve made ourselves be stall-happy about, like essay deadlines and cleaning up after ourselves. Between day to day errands and long-term goals, it’s easy to say we procrastinate because we’re all driven towards convenience.

Among all the choices that we make and all the opportunities we take, we seek timeliness, ease and advantage.

Then I thought about how well we do perform when we “take the bull by the horns”. Think about the last time you did something you actually wanted to do.

I’m not talking about the choices you make in fear of derailing your best-interest or compromises you make for your tumultuous life. When’s the last time you made a choice that you really wanted to make?

It seems that it’s only when convenience comes with less than convenient consequences that we shame ourselves for jumping the gun or stalling on a choice. It’s hard to see anticipation and procrastination as a  sort of spectrum when it’s consequences are only noticeable in its extremes.

We, as college students, hyper-focus on our procrastination because our consequences end with things like being cripplingly overwhelmed or failing a prerequisite the second to last semester of your senior year (hitting home, anyone?). It was only after I realized this, that my professor gave me my “aha” moment.

“We also forget that over-anticipation negates the possibility for serendipity.”

– Cindy Royal

Truth is, we yearn for the perfect moment for things, whether we try to make it or wait for it. In fact, before writing this very article, I was looking through my notes and found a reminder to look up what “serendipity” means.

 I figured the word meant something along the lines of “fate”, but it wasn’t until I was looking the word up that I found what I wanted to write about.

No, I don’t believe that I was far along, just destined to write about the irony of my serendipity, nor do I think that somewhere down the line I wouldn’t have had my own thoughts on it.

 But think about the times you were moved by epiphanies and coincidences that were honestly, very practical. Better yet, think about how often that practical moment led you to make an even more practical yet advantageous choice.

When you’re anxious to start or avoid a task, consider the means to your own self-proclaimed serendipity. There is such a thing as doing the right things at the wrong time and vice-versa.

Whether we choose to see the opportunities in our reach due to the world revolving at just the right angle to favor us or as an untelling chain of events, there’s always hope in the serenity of serendipity.

Featured image by Chelyse Prevost via screenshot.

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