Zoom out

There's no point toning it down - an MBA program is one of the most demanding things you will ever do. What makes the process even more challenging is that you will not always have a clearly defined structure for the things you do. Quite often, you will have to create your own plan of action and explore apparently uncharted territory. What will primarily define the quality of your experience is how you choose to perceive this challenge.

MBAs are often result-oriented in their perspectives. While this is a vital skill in being able to set and achieve clearly defined career goals, it can be counter-productive in a learning environment. A common theme in your first classes will be your professors saying the same thing in different ways - that your grades are not as important as the experience you will have here. Chasing an A grade instead of immersing yourself in the process of a team project, or sparing a few hours a week for recreation, is not the way to go, and both your teachers and seniors will attest to it.

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="180" caption="Take off those blinders!"]Blinders[/caption]

A good way to deal with this is to reassess your priorities. Why are you really here? More than likely, you had a job you were good at and had opportunities to further your career in more ways than one. The very fact that you had pause to consider an MBA suggests that you were doing well enough to seek growth. When you think along those lines, you find that in the bigger picture, you have primarily come here to learn and to develop. To do this, you must be prepared to deal with failure, and bounce back into the game quickly. This is where your 2 years at Fisher come in - this is a sandbox for you to stumble, fumble and fall. You will push your limits here, test new waters and inevitably find your calling.

The only investment you need to make here is hard work. Stress, trepidation, fear and insecurity are burdens you need not bear, simply because they do nothing to protect you from the very outcomes they dread. Instead stay focused on the experience, conscientiously observing yourself and those around you, and allowing yourself the space and time to burgeon.

Sometimes all you really need to do is to zoom out and take it all in.