On making a difference

There is something immensely satisfying about running that final copy of a paper that you have been working on for weeks and weeks through the printer for the last time. Everything is just right; countless hours of research and eyes glued to a laptop screen has crystalised itself into a pristine 7,500 words in justified size 12 Calibri font.

It’s that same feeling of satisfaction that you get when you’ve had a shower and are putting on fresh clothes after a really intense workout. After weeks of indecision and pushing back your Christmas shopping, it’s the satisfaction you get from tying together that last ribbon on the last remaining unwrapped present into a neat little bow.

I first stepped foot onto a university campus when I was 15 and taking a psychology paper as a high school student. I could have never imagined that six years later and after four years of being a full time (legitimate) university student, that I would be able to look back and feel a sense of satisfaction of having done and achieved something significant. These are not personal accomplishments but the sum of so many people who, collectively, have been able to make a true difference to the spaces we inhabit.

It’s tempting to feel like I can “retire” now, but things still need to be done. More papers need to be written, change waiting to be made by those that will put their hands up. I’m always a giant ball of inertia when I jump on that treadmill after work, but I’ve never once thought to myself afterwards: “gee, I really regret doing all that running today”.


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