Don’t get too comfortable

The small act of leaving your dorm and exploring what’s beyond campus

Hanna Bubser, Columnist

The trees are nearly bare and the wind has a snap to it. The homework load is revving up one last time before the semester reaches its end. It’s the beginning of winter and with that comes the holiday season. When we were young, November and December meant cheer and warm mittens and count downs to winter break. Not a care in the world other than whether or not we had snow pants so we could build forts during recess.

The holidays, while still special, have a different meaning when you’re in college. As classes reach their end, we find ourselves spending large amounts of time huddled up in throw blankets with messy hair, textbooks spread across our beds and a mug of watered down hot cocoa that would make the 8-year-old versions of ourselves beyond sad. We’re stressed. It’s not a surprise.

But sometimes, especially during the cold months, we can let this overwhelm us and we can get stuck in a “lull.” During this time of cold and darkness, it can be easy to fall into a repetitive day to day routine. Wake up, go to work, go to class, find time to eat a sandwich, maybe take a nap, do some homework, check social media, go to bed and repeat the next morning. It’s not a terrible way to spend a day, but after awhile it gets absolutely unnerving.

I’m the kind of person who doesn’t mind a little repetitiveness, but I’m not always all right with what it can lead to. This time of year, us college students can get a little too comfortable. We live this daily “lull” and don’t think about doing much else.

No one can take blame for it. It comes along with the college lifestyle. The stress and pressure of the semester’s end can be enough to make us think about nothing else. And while it is obviously important to do well in class, what about the whole other part of us that craves something more than getting an A? Staying in your dorm on Friday night with Netflix and a bag of microwave popcorn can be pretty tempting. Trust me, I’ve been there plenty of times. But that’s no way to spend every single weekend.

We are located in the Twin Cities, which is one of the best spots for a young person to find themselves, in my opinion. There’s a surplus of food, events and things to see. There is always something going on and to be a part of.

Adversely, it can also be quite intimidating. It can be difficult to figure out where to start. Staying on campus seems like the easier option. But exploring the communities of both St. Paul and Minneapolis is worth it. It’s the perfect way to break the “lull” that November and December bring.

Take a moment to assess what is going on in your life right now. Glance at your planner, scan through your books. It’s a lot. Of course it’s a lot. But guess what? It’s not everything. It’s important to break your routine, even if it’s just every once and awhile.

By no means do you need to find yourself going out each night until the wee hours of the morning, but maybe the next time an opportunity presents itself, you take that light rail ride to the Target Center. Or even just spend the night in a friend’s apartment, watching movies and catching up. College can be absolutely amazing, but it can take a toll as well. Make time to branch out and do something a little out of your comfort zone. The daily grind is a tough pattern to shake, but the only thing holding you back is yourself.