Reblahgging from several years ago – because it’s timely!
So you got a bunch of apps in this week, or maybe there’s a straggler that you’re still working on for tonight. Great! Congrats! That’s huge! Definitely you deserve a break after that big push in the past few weeks.
Once you’ve caught up on your sleep, and re-introduced yourself to your girlfriend/boyfriend/spouse, and apologized to your boss for being totally checked out mentally this week… what do you do then?
We strongly recommend that you pick up a hobby. You’re gonna need it.
The first day or so after deadlines typically brings a rush of satisfaction. You did it! Apps submitted, project accomplished! That alone can be a pretty great feeling.
But now you’re headed into what some claim to be the very hardest part of the entire process: The waiting.
The days and weeks and months from right now, today, through Decision Day in March are not going to be easy. At least those Round 1 BSers had Halloween and Thanksgiving to serve as distractions and interruptions from the waiting. Yes, you will (hopefully!!) be receiving invitations to interview, and there’s the inevitable disappointment that scads of applicants will experience right around the end of January / first of February, when HBS “releases” its crop of candidates who they aren’t asking to interview. So there will certainly be plenty of drama, and (hopefully!!!!!) you’ll be busy with interview prep in the sometime near future.
But that won’t occupy your time, and even more importantly, it won’t occupy your mind.
What you need is a hobby. Something to do with yourself. A way to put yourself to productive good use in your idle hours.
Even better: Dive back in with the volunteer work you told the adcoms that you participate in – that you haven’t actually participated in very much for the past year since you’ve been busy with GMAT and then essays (and reading MBA forums) for way too much of your time.
The very best advice that we can offer right now: Pick up the pace in your life. You’re on a high from the submits. Use that newfound energy to your advantage. At this very moment – yes, NOW – figure out what you’re going to do with yourself for the next three months. Chart a course. Come up with a plan. Then DO it.
Get re-engaged at work. Find a way to improve things for your team. Look for a project that will make your boss look good. (You do realize that that’s the best way to make your manager love you, right?) Turn your attention to something that matters, and find a way to have an impact with it, at work or in community or just in your life. Clean out the closet or organize the garage or detail your car. Do something that you’ve been putting off and never managed to get around to.
Right now, you’re riding high with the energy of accomplishment. The best way to get to the next level in your life is to apply that proactively to the next big thing. That’s how you can leapfrog yourself and become a new and better person in no time flat.
It’s the New Year. Grab hold of that energy that’s available and make something happen.
Or you can go back to the couch with your beer and your video games.
Life is all about choices. Make some good ones in the next day or so and who knows who you will become?