December 18th, 2014

You know what I’ve been doing this past month when I haven’t been at work? I’ve been cross-stitching – sometimes Christmas presents, sometimes just fun projects I never finished. I’ve been cross-stitching, but I haven’t been SACross-stitching.

In this world of constantly being able to be online and having conversations with people about work or student affairs 24/7, it’s easy to get sucked down the SA rabbit hole. And if you’re thinking of it, we’ve probably got a hashtag for it – heck, I’ve even helped to start a couple of them myself. Why just read when you can #SAReads, right? Don’t get me wrong, I think there’s a time and a place for some of these – we do talk about readings pertinent to student affairs on that hashtag, we do talk about technology specific to student affairs on the #SATech hashtag, etc. But I also think there’s a time and a place to let go of student affairs. And more importantly, I think it’s OKAY to let go of student affairs.

There is simply no reason to be all student affairs all of the time. Frankly, if you are, you’re going to make for a rather boring individual. One of the things that can make us good at our jobs is to take care of ourselves – and that means stepping away from the #SA-whatever occasionally – or even more than occasionally, regularly.

My goal for myself in the coming year is to not just read #SAReads, but KristenReads – lots and lots of books that have nothing to do with student affairs and can’t be tied back to it (okay, who am I kidding – I do this anyways. I just want to do more of it). I want to be dedicated to KristenCommits – looking at mental health in the workplace overall, not just in student affairs. And I want to be KristenFit – because I’m doing this for me, after all.

Being part of student affairs has been one of the more rewarding parts of my life – but it’s just that: a part of my life. And in the recent past, it has become far too large a part of my life. I’m ready to take back the part of me that has nothing to do with student affairs and to live a fuller life.

Who wants to join me in being more than SA-everything this coming year?