Life lessons from my browser tab

Feb. 7, 2019, 1:00 a.m.

Like many students across the nation, I have an extension called Momentum downloaded onto the Google Chrome browser on my computer. Each day when I open my laptop to go about my work, an aesthetically pleasing photo, such as mountains or an exotic city I will probably never visit, fills my screen. In the middle of this photo, the time is displayed in large font, followed by the words, “Good morning, Angie” and “What is your main focus for today?”

I never fill in the blank below; I’m too busy checking off items on the to-do list on the bottom right corner of the same screen. I also frequently check the weather forecast for the day on the top right corner, yet one aspect of Momentum that I tended to ignore until recently is the daily quote written in small white font at the bottom of the screen. This week, however, I decided to pay attention to what my computer was telling me every day, and here’s what I found:

Monday: “If you’re tired, learn to rest, not to quit.”

Reading this quote surprisingly ended up being an aha moment for me, especially on a dreary Monday when I was feeling tired and unmotivated to face another week full of things to do. Resting is one thing Stanford students are extremely bad at. However, my computer reminded me that a frustrating problem set, a dense reading, a frustrating phase in a relationship or a bad day is no reason to give up, but rather to take a break.

Tuesday: “Whether a thought is spoken or not, it is a real thing and has powers of reality.”

I think Momentum was trying a bit too hard to be deep with this one, yet the quote does have some truth in that all thoughts matter, expressed or not.

Wednesday: “The world will ask you who you are, and if you do not know, the world will tell you.”

A bit cringeworthy once again, but, in a way, this quote can be relatable for us college students as we are in the pivotal stage of our life where the world constantly asks who we are, or at least what we want to be. As time goes on I am realizing it is okay for me not to know, but instead of letting the world tell me, I hope each day can be a step towards finding out on my own. Take that as an inspirational quote, Momentum.

Thursday: “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?”

This reminded me of another quote that was sent out in a BEAM Career Center newsletter earlier this year. It said something along the lines of: “Don’t think ‘What do I want to do for the rest of my life?’ Think ‘What do I want to try first?’” Both quotes have the similar underlying message not to let fears of failure or uncertainty stop you from trying – at the very least – something you want to do. This was especially comforting to me, an “unpractical” fuzzy studying English.

Friday: “Too many people overvalue what they are not and undervalue what they are.”

To end off the week, this quote encouraged me to recognize the classic message to “stay in your own lane” instead of comparing yourself with others. I am enough and valued, just the way I am, and so are you. It shouldn’t take my computer telling me to know that, but thanks, Momentum.


Contact Angie Lee at angielee ‘at’

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