If you would’ve asked me if I was comfortable doing things entirely by myself 3 years ago, I would’ve very sincerely said “no.” I had always been the type of person who thrived in a group setting, feeling most comfortable surrounded by several of my closest friends. And then I went to college. College is one of the first times in your life that all the choices you make directly affect your future and you are entirely in control of all your decisions. As I quickly approach the end of my senior year, I have come to embrace myself as an individual and have begun hanging out with myself; a concept that really leads you down a path of self-discovery. While trying out this new personal philosophy, I have found several surprisingly simple ways that really allow you to discover more about yourself and the world we live in. If you try out at least one of the below, you will be surprised by what you come to find!
- Live with an entirely new crop of people. Obviously some safety considerations must be made but that is why there are websites like Uloop.com which match you up with (hopefully not sketchy) students. What better way to expand out of your comfort zone and meet new people. Seeing yourself acclimating to the ways of others really shows you a lot about yourself. Every person has several different facets of their personality that come out in certain situations. When you surround yourself with new people, you will come to discover facets of yourself you might not have been originally cognizant of.
- Go sit in a coffee shop, without headphones, to do your homework. Be in the moment, listen, breathe, watch. We often forget that we are just like everyone else going through our day-to-day. Coffee shops are full of driven and inspired people, and you will be surprisingly more productive.
- Don’t wear headphones in public. Seriously. Don’t cut yourself out from the world around you! There have been many times when I have met some of the most interesting people and have had incredible conversations while riding the bus or while on a plane. Everyone has a story they’d love to tell. You’ll be surprised by the kinds of things you’ll learn.
- Walk. Everywhere. When you’re on foot, you are more apt to see things that you typically would’ve cruised by if in a car or bus. There are so many little gems in life that we are too busy to realize. Something as quaint as a family owned boutique or bakery can be found tucked away in an alley and often offer unexpectedly incredible goodies. A friend of mine literally stops and smells the roses. We often miss the little pleasures in life with our busy schedules.
- If you’re really feeling adventurous, (like me), spend a month in Europe without anyone you know. This last tip is what I will be writing about in future posts. I will be graduating early and have decided to spend a month touring Europe before I begin working fulltime. This year has been one of serious change for me and as a reward to myself for all the hard work put in through these 4 years of school, what better way to do so then to spend 30 days in a place so full of culture and history. I will be embracing every day. I will be embracing my youth. I will be seizing my youth; carpe juvenis.