I’m Michelle Callaghan, a second-year graduate student at Villanova University. This is our new column, “‘Cat in the Stacks.” I’m the ‘cat. Falvey Memorial Library is the stacks. I’ll be posting about living that scholarly life, from research to study habits to embracing your inner-geek, and how the library community might aid you in all of it.
Kris Jenkins. If you don’t know the name by now, I can’t call you a Wildcat! Mr. Buzzer Beater himself said of his championship-winning shot, “I think every shot is going in, so that one was no different” [source].
No different. Except it was – it was the winning shot. But what a great perspective Jenkins brings to the court. We can learn a lot from that simple idea–every shot you take, you’d better believe it’s going in. What’s the point, otherwise?
Academics might not be basketball, and you might not be eyeing up a championship title with your exams and reports, but you still got to believe every effort is going to score. When everything is stacked against you and the clock is counting down, you could give in under the pressure. You can slack, you can give in, and you can give up. Or you can adopt a success mindset and believe that, no matter what, every shot is going in.
Now we all know what that success mindset looks like in basketball–it looks like Kris Jenkins’ winning shot. What does it look like when it comes to your education? I believe it looks like a persistent, stubborn conviction that the work you do is good work. Do your best. Forget the rest. (Thanks, Tony Horton!) I’m not saying you need to become unhealthily obsessed with perfection, because that’ll only lead to mental paralysis and procrastination. But when you do your best and truly believe that every shot is going in, you’ll know that every effort you give is a good effort.
That might not mean you’re always squared off before you shoot for three. That might not mean your shot won’t bounce off the backboard or swirl around the toilet bowl and pop out again. But you can rest assured that you didn’t cramp your success by not believing that shot would land. When it doesn’t — ‘cause sometimes it won’t — you just get that ball back and try again. After all, the Wildcats didn’t win 77-0–but they still won.
As we eye up finals and summertime, no matter how tough and rough the road gets, don’t stop believing in your shots. You got this!
Article by Michelle Callaghan, graduate assistant on the Communication and Service Promotion team. She is currently pursuing her MA in English at Villanova University.
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