Be the Change

Hey strangers! Long time, no blog, I know.

Senior year is upon me and it feels, well, a little bit overwhelming.

Aside from taking 18 credit hours, serving as President of my business fraternity, founding ‘The Veg Club of Virginia Tech,’ staying involved with my sorority and its upcoming philanthropic events, serving as a member of the Virginia Tech Dining Services Student Advisory Board, maintaining my active vegan lifestyle and trying to secure a job by the end of this semester, I also feel the pressure to define who I will am now, who I will be in the future and the impact I will have on the world.

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A professional photo taken at a business fraternity event in hopes to snag a job in the near future!

I’ve evidently done a lot of growing over my time in college and my perspective on a lot of things has changed.

My most impactful change in perspective quite frankly started from making the transition to the vegan lifestyle. From then on, my eyes were opened.

I longer find myself caught up in the façade of material possessions or caught up in impressions people might have of me. None of that seems to matter as much as it once did.

The famous words “Be the change you want to see,” by Ghandi, continuously resonate with me everywhere I go, in anything I do and in everything I see.

Why settle for the status quo? Why do something just because it’s always been done? Why do what everyone else is doing? Why not do something better? 

Sometimes to break the mold and to make that difference, you’re going to have to be that odd ball out, the strange one. You’re going to have to be the outcast, the different one. But you know what? I’ve never been more okay with that than I am right now at this point in my life.

After a weekend of a bad cold cuddling up to some Netflix and hot tea, I watched the biographical movie on Steve Jobs, “Jobs.” I was unexpectedly inspired beyond what I could have imagined. This quote in particular stood out to me.

“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The trouble-makers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently…they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius.” -Steve Jobs

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Steve Jobs was actually a raw vegan or fruitarian and because of this, was able to live 10 years after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. His biggest inspiration was Albert Einstein, the face of innovation and genius, and also vegan.

Yes, up until this point in my life, I’ve been on track with exactly what the typical individual raised in an affluent suburban metropolitan area in a developed country is expected to do: graduate high school, go to a four-year university and work the rest of your life to maintain society as we know it.

To that last part–no, thank you. I’ve been educated enough, through my schooling, but also through my own experiences and personal research, to realize that the world as it is should not be the world we strive to maintain. A change needs to be made–an understatement if I’ve ever seen one.

With that said, I know I was put on the Earth for a reason and it feels wrong to live my life by the status quo not making a difference. I want to change the world. I want to make a lasting impact. I want to do better, so the world can be better. 

So how do I go about that? one might ask.

Well, for starters, I need to have people realize that if everyone began caring more for others and the world around them than they do for their own personal interests, we might just see some change. I need to help people understand that if we each possessed a little more compassion and empathy, gears might just start a’turning. We have been raised in an individualistic culture that teaches us to tend to ourselves and not to trust anyone, each man for themselves. But what if there was a way to satisfy yourself while benefiting the world around you?

This is where the plant-based lifestyle comes in.

And now, this is where open-mindedness enters the conversation. That’s a big one that a lot of people struggle with, which is understandable. It’s difficult to break social norms, to risk disaffiliation from your peers, to fear losing social belongingness, to part from everything you’re comfortable with, everything you’ve grown to trust in.

This is where we must think about the BIG PICTURE and believe in self-efficacy. This message of change for a better world through ways of compassion and kindness for one another and society as a whole is huge and although it will take a great deal of effort, every single person makes a difference. If we can reverse and delete cancer, disease, global warming, animal cruelty and world hunger all by transitioning to a different way of eating, living and ultimately thinking, why wouldn’t we?

My eyes have been opened.

I feel as though by going vegan I’ve done good, but I know I can do better. I’m ready to do greater things, to reach more people, to improve this world we live in forever.

If you’ve stayed with me this far, I hope my inspired futuristic thoughts have not scared you away too much. I simply want people to know, to be aware and to make informed decisions when the time comes.

I encourage you all to watch any and all of these documentaries. These wonderful documentaries are one of the easiest ways to understand this lifestyle, where I’m coming from, and why I’ve stuck with it for 1 year and 3 months, and will continue with it for the rest of my life.

Each can be found on Netflix or another online location:

Go vegan and change the world with me. #plantpower #plantstrong

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I promise you I’m not crazy. This is the way of the future.

Back to studying! Three exams on Tuesday…

P.S. Tomorrow is the official ‘Hug a Vegan’ Day, so feel free to show me some love! 😉

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