OWL Magazine Korea

“Do it now, not just once.”

The two years spent at Sungkyunkwan University provided not only valuable lessons in the classroom but also ample opportunities to learn from fellow classmates. Among the peers who entered together in 2011, there were seniors who were five years older than the author, from whom significant psychological support was received.

Around the end of the first semester at Sungkyunkwan University in 2011, the author received a contact from a senior peer. At that time, the senior was operating an English academy and proposed the idea of helping out at the academy during the midterm exam period for middle school students.

Since the final exams had not concluded at that time, instead of immediately assisting, the author introduced a suitable senior who had taken a leave of absence for the role. After the exams were over, the author also joined to assist at the academy.

During the approximately two-week period living together at the academy during the middle school exam season, the experience concluded with a simple gathering at a nearby chicken restaurant.

“Do it now, not just once.”

In the midst of a brief yet meaningful time together, the three of us engaged in various conversations. Looking back on that scene after several years, while not every detail of those discussions is recalled, one particular story remains in memory.

The senior also shared a lesson learned from an older figure when he was 20, which was passed down to the author. In summary, the lesson was not about suggesting to do something “once in a while” but rather about doing it “right now.”

In our lives, we often casually say, “Let’s have a meal together sometime.” However, these words rarely lead to actual action. Therefore, instead of making such statements, it would be better to engage in a conversation over a vending machine coffee right now. Given that finding vending machine coffee has become difficult with changing times, perhaps the concept should be adapted to “takeout coffee,” but ultimately, the essence remains about the importance of “doing it now.”

“Rather than doing something ‘once in a while’ or ‘later,’ do it right now.”

We often use the phrase “once in a while” too frequently. However, that ‘once in a while’ may never happen in our lifetime. In English, the word ‘present’ signifies ‘now.’ ‘Present’ also has another meaning: ‘gift.’

Ultimately, the present refers to the current moment and is indeed a gift. Instead of using the excuse of not having enough time, it might be better to act on something right now.

In conclusion, it is necessary not to do something ‘once in a while’ but to act right now. Even if it’s just offering a cheap cup of coffee, spending time getting to know the person next to you right now is more important.