Readers’ Forum: 4/14/20


The benefits of waking up early

“Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.” This well-known saying, made famous by Benjamin Franklin, may have much more truth than you realize. Everyone knows what it’s like to wake up to a blaring alarm, only to be freed by the liberating mercy of the snooze button. Although doing so is gratifying in the moment, it feels way better in the long run to get up early.

Waking up just 30 minutes earlier than usual can help you be more productive. Whether that time is spent exercising, reading a good book, tackling homework, praying or searching the scriptures, it will leave you feeling more accomplished. That feeling of accomplishment can transform into confidence in your schoolwork and can positively influence your whole day.

Now, waking up earlier (or waking up in general for that matter) may not be easy for most people. Make sure that when tackling this beast in your life that you don’t bite off more than you can chew. Try and get up a little earlier each day. This will be easier by going to sleep sooner. Also, consider putting your alarm out of reach from your bed so that turning it off requires you to get up.

So, if you want to be more productive, get better grades or have more motivation, consider waking up 30 minutes earlier than you do now. I have done so, and though waking up still can be a challenge, the benefits are well worth it. It will change your college experience and your life.

Samuel Pratt
Cameron, MO

Anxiety during a pandemic

As a teenager, I struggled with anxiety. When it took over, I couldn’t look beyond the problem at hand; my thoughts were cumbered with doubt, hopelessness and many other negative emotions. By the grace of God, I overcame that difficulty, yet it feels like today the entire world is experiencing one of my teenage anxiety attacks.

A global pandemic, earthquakes, imminent war, inequality, severe political partisan animosity, the cacophonous bickering of moral controversies — it seems there is no end to this chaotic typhoon tormenting our existence. Being continually caught up in the whirlwind of relentless news updates, fashion trends and social media notifications causes us to drown in our own lives.

And yet, the sun still rises and sets. The world has not ended, nor do I think it’s going to end soon.

Like my teenage anxiety, we’ll get over it. I’m 20 now. Life still goes on. I’m still learning, growing and making mistakes, but I look to the future with optimism. So stop stocking up on toilet paper and relax. Yes, our world will never be the same, but if we’re being honest, it’s never been the same.

As the Persian adage goes, “This too shall pass.” The world is simply
experiencing a trough in the ups and downs of life.

Andrew Gabbitas
Taylorsville, UT

A wedding during COVID-19

On January 19, 2020, I became engaged to the love of my life. Eleven days later, on January 30, the World Health Organization declared a global health emergency. For me COVID-19 was both literally and figuratively a foreign issue. I recognized that people were getting sick and that was scary, but I also had a wedding to plan and a psychology degree to finish.

Planning for the future consumed most, if not all, of my free time. Things got weirder as the virus spread throughout the world. Over the course of a week, BYU classes were cancelled and moved online, my graduation was cancelled, businesses shut down (including that of my paid internship) and the restrictions on large gatherings went from groups of 100 to groups of 50.

My fiancé and I continuously made alternative reception plans, trying to accommodate for the new announcements and restrictions. At this point we’ve postponed our reception and plan on getting married regardless in May. I am devastated that I won’t get to celebrate with all our friends and family at this time, but can I just say when people said that planning a wedding is crazy, I don’t think anyone meant this crazy!

Franklin Palmer
Lindon, UT

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