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Academics, Recruiting, and Extra Curriculars: How to Prioritize Self-Care

About Cassidy: Cassidy Waters (’24) is from the Bay Area and graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and a minor in Marketing. After graduation, Cassidy worked for a media agency executing the integrated advertising strategies for various clients, most recently Universal Pictures. At Anderson, she is looking to pivot into a content or strategy role at an entertainment/media tech

Academics, Recruiting, and Extra Curriculars: How to Prioritize Self-Care

Life is all about finding balance. Never has this statement felt more applicable than in the last six months since starting at Anderson. Between countless networking and recruiting events, meeting new people and building friendships, and actually studying for classes, there is little time left to devote to self-care as a first-year MBA student. However, maintaining a healthy balance is not only essential for your happiness, but it has also been proven to boost productivity and lead to greater career success in the long run. So here are some of my personal reminders on how to balance all that Anderson has to offer, while keeping your sanity in check:

  1. It’s okay to say “no”

This is one that I struggled with a lot at first. In your first days/weeks/months of business school, it will seem like you simply MUST go to every club event, happy hour, and extracurricular activity Anderson is promoting. While you definitely want to take advantage of all the exciting new opportunities, you also don’t want to stretch yourself too thin and put both your physical and mental health at risk. The reality is you won’t be able to attend every single event, so remember to prioritize your time and say “no” to things that don’t spark joy – I know FOMO is real, but I promise there will be more than enough chances to make up for it!

  1. Don’t compare yourself to others

When it comes to finding an internship (or full-time job), it’s easy to get swept up in what your other classmates are doing and how they’re approaching the recruiting process. But it’s important to remember that everyone has a unique career path and is on a different timeline. As someone who is currently recruiting for Entertainment, it’s been easy for me to compare myself to those in Consulting or Finance industries who are already receiving offers for summer positions. Rather than letting the outside noise in, it’s important to focus on your individual goals and ultimately remember the reason why you came to Anderson in the first place.

  1. Break out of the Anderson bubble every once in a while

By this, I mean don’t forget that life exists beyond the walls of Anderson. Starting business school is a huge life change and the newness of everything can often feel overwhelming and all-encompassing. While I fully support submerging yourself in the experience, it’s also important to find footing elsewhere to remain rooted in your own perspective. Stay in touch with family and friends, explore new areas in and around Los Angeles, introduce others to your favorite hobbies, and continue to nourish your pre-MBA identity. In doing so, you’ll learn how to balance all aspects of your life in a healthy and enjoyable way.

  1. Carve out me-time and allow space to unwind

Sometimes, the best thing you can do for yourself is take a step back. Whether that’s from recruiting, social outings, or anything else, try to take a moment for yourself and prioritize self-care: get a good night’s sleep, disconnect from your email/slack for an afternoon, go for a long walk, meditate, treat yourself to a massage, etc. Taking the time to destress will not only improve your current mental state, but your future self with also thank you in the long run.

Creating balance is often easier said than done and while it can seem easy to get distracted by the stress of so many things going on at once, don’t forget to prioritize yourself and ultimately ENJOY your first few months of MBA life.

Student Blogger: Cassidy Waters ‘24

Undergrad: University of Southern California (’17)

Pre-MBA:Digital Media Advertising, Essence Global

Leadership@Anderson: Marketing Director, Admission Ambassador Corps; Director of Brand/Communications, Marketing Association; Entertainment Management Association, Women’s Business Connection

Instagram: @casswaters

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