ILYSM had a conversation with the incredible and inspiring Khalil Greene, Yale University's first Black student body president in its 319-year history. We chatted overcoming anxiety, the importance of a to do list, and the most soothing Mariah Carey song.
How do you start your morning?Do you have any rituals that have helped you during the pandemic?
I start my morning in an awful way: I probably spend about 20 min scrolling through social media. I try to be intentional at first because my job requires me to keep up to date with trends, but I usually devolve into mindless consumption.
Do you have any rituals that have helped you during the pandemic?
Using "Reminders" and "To-do lists" to get my work done has been life-saving. In this increasingly unstructured world, I always feel like there's some upcoming due date or deadline that I'm going to miss. At least once every other day, I take the time to put everything I need to do into a written list to take the load off of my overworked brain.
Trait you value most in others?Trait you value most in yourself?
The trait I value most in others is drive. I love being surrounded by people who love something and are pursuing that goal/passion/thing at full force. The trait I value most in myself is my candidness. I say what's on my mind and defend what I believe.
Best recommendation a friend recently gave (can be a book, recipe etc) that you would like to recycle over to us?
Broadway shows. I just saw my first Broadway show (Aladdin) after my friend recommended it and it blew my mind. The experience was so immersive and it was an escape from reality that boosted my mood in a manner nothing else has for a long time.
Do you have any advice for people that want to get involved with an organization but not sure how to help, or have social anxiety?
Social anxiety is very real, but I honestly believe that (barring it being detrimental to your overall health) you just really have to push through it. Sometimes confidence comes after an action, not before. When I studied abroad in London, I told myself that I would strike up a conversation with everyone my age that I met (in an elevator, train station, or classroom). It never got less frightening, but I just got more use to the discomfort.
Most soothing thing you've listened to lately?
Mariah Carey. And not Mariah Carey's Christmas song, her beautiful love ballads. Specifically, "Just to Hold You Once Again" from her Music Box album.
What are you working on, and how can the ILYSM community support?
Right now, I'm growing my social media presence and would love for the community to follow my Instagram and TikTok accounts and react to any posts that resonate with them. I discuss history and politics so there's bound to be content for everyone.
Kahlil is wearing the ILYSM Tabi in Camel Shadow Stripe
*Follow Kahlil @kahlil.greene