Friday, September 21, 2012

Being kiasu

Uni life has begun, and my kiasu-ness has been coming out of the closet. This is strange, because I’m a laid-back type who wouldn’t be too bothered with results or competitors etc. Ok, so maybe “ laid-back” is an understatement. I’m downright lazy.

But laziness seems to be taking a backseat these days. For example, during orientation they were introducing us to all the elective and minor courses we could take and immediately the desire to take ALL of them (well, almost all) popped up in my head. I don’t know why. Also, we were grouped together in our respective courses during orientation and I was constantly trying to check out the competition. I had to rein my kiasu-ness in and remind myself that these people are going to be my course-mates, not my rivals. I’m supposed to be making friends.

But friends can be rivals, right? 

Shut up, kiasu. 

During classes, if I notice someone being outspoken, my inner hackles will start to rise. I won’t challenge the person (I don’t speak much in class), but I feel…almost like I’m being threatened. I’d tell myself that I need to work harder (on what I don’t know though, it’s only been the 2nd week).

I suppose the most shocking thing my kiasu self has done was borrowed a book (non-fiction) and declared that I will finish it in a day. Of course I ran out of steam after the 6th chapter (but I took notes! ME take NOTES from a book @@). It was about halfway through the book though. This week, I borrowed 3 grammar books and was determined to go through all of them (despite the fact that one of them is thicker than my Bible). Why grammar books? Because I sat through one grammar lecture and felt like a complete idiot. Grammar is my worst subject for now.

Just a side note: whenever I read the grammar books I imagine my English teacher, Mdm. Poga’s voice in my head. I suppose it’s because she’s the only one who taught me grammar properly. Sadly I’ve forgotten a lot. And there’s tons more to learn.

My kiasu-ness is affecting my house-keeping here too. I’ve been neater and more organised than I’ve ever been at home. I must have tidied my things 11 times or more during the past few weeks. Back home I may not even tidy my room once a year.

If this is what happens when I go to a small town uni, I wonder what my kiasu self would do if I go to a super kiasu place like Singapore. Sure JOAC.

Perhaps it’s because I’m taking a course that is finally a subject that I’m strong in. I’ve noticed that when I know I’m good at something, I would push myself to be better; but if it’s a weaker subject, I’d have lower expectations on myself. Come to think of it, I’ve been very competitive in English classes, so I guess it’s no surprise that I’m going all out now.

Fortunately or unfortunately, the kiasu thing is dying down slightly. I’ve stopped cleaning the house every two days (I have NO idea why I was doing that). I don’t feel so much of that kiasu stress breathing down my neck. Hopefully it won’t die down to the point of me becoming lazy again. I do want to do very well this time.

In ALL areas. Even co-curricular activities. And sports. And and…everything! You’re going to be a model student. Graduate with honours and be in the newspapers and “bwing hana to da famry” - 

SHUT UP, KIASU. 

We’ll see how it goes.