Spring is a time of massive re-evaluation. The birth of all things new invites a wind of hope into our thawing spirits and with it brings a sense of care-free joy. Not that all things “spring” are positive: the endless climate changes paired with the frustration of new class schedules, new deadlines and new worries to carry on our backs (atop our checking account’s worth in textbook expenses) are enough to keep us locked in winter mode, bundled up in the same sweatpants we’ve worn for three days straight, eating what’s left of our ancient grocery store endeavor, cooped up inside watching “Workaholics” all day. Spring bares the highest of highs and lowest of lows of all seasons, collectively, and when hot and cold collide, catastrophic storms ensue.
I find it increasingly difficult to get out of my seat and break the icy-coated comforts of wintery fireplaces and hot cocoa. It’s true, I admit it; I don’t want to roll out of bed in the morning, despite the inviting warm weather and the sound of child’s laughter rustling through blossoming tree branches. But why? Many of the people I have seen and conversed with over the past month have mentioned similar habits, which makes me wonder: Why are we all so inclined to waste our springtime away inside?
As the summer’s edge draws near, the end is just within reach. Which means the recent outbreak of carelessness and lack of motivation couldn’t have plagued campus at a worse time of year. This being a time of high-stress and important dates and deadlines, it is important to self-motivate. If you’re anything like me, you’re more than likely wondering who ever could manage so arduous a task in this gorgeous weather. Luckily, I have been gathering wisdom from having undergone many drastic changes myself these first several weeks of spring. I have drafted a full-proof survival guide to you, aspiring reader. May all your springtime endeavors be drenched with inspiration and positive perspectives; hope is all around us.
They don’t call it “spring cleaning” for nothing.
The sun is dancing through the separations in the blinds, calling you outside and away from your responsibilities. Stop! Take a look at your weekly planner. If the last time you updated it was a week before winter finals, it’s time to start plotting out your daily schedule. Writing out your agenda on a daily basis can help you keep your life compartmentalized and orderly.
Organizing your life also requires organizing your personal living space. It’s time to finally unpack those suitcases that have been sitting in the corner behind your bed from spring break. As hectic as everyday college life is, making time to arrange your living space reaps surprising rewards. You might recover something missing from months before, or even decide to go as far as redecorating your room. As time-consuming and back-breaking as it was to nail bedsheets to my ceiling, draping fabric over my formerly plain walls gave me a kick of inspiration at the idea of waking up to something new every day. My room is clean and reordered. That “fresh start” feeling is important to harness when approaching a pivotal season of change.
Cut your losses.
You lost your job. You got removed from a group because you couldn’t meet the stringent member requirements and your boyfriend of two years ended it out of nowhere over a text message. Take the time you need to grieve, and get over it. Life does not stop for anybody. If winter got you in hermit-mode, it’s time to step up and take out the trash. Clean out all the clutter that is holding you back from getting where you want to be. Make some new goals to aspire to like joining an intermural sports team in your quest for fitness by summertime. Try going to a new group meeting to meet new faces, or reach out to an old classmate to meet up and recover lost time.
The important thing is that you took the time you needed to grieve whatever did not work out for you last quarter, and that you’re finally taking the bold steps you need to move forward. Cutting your losses is important to your mental health and awareness, as they will be of use to you in the coming weeks for midterm exams. If you are struggling to move past what you could not control, remember that whatever challenges you face, somebody has always faced worse, and lived. Pain is not forever. When in doubt, a Khalil Gibran quote to keep with you: “Pain and foolishness lead to great bliss and complete knowledge, for eternal wisdom created nothing under the sun in vain.”
Become a “yes” man (or woman).
The seasonal rotation of the world reminds us that time and energy are constantly moving; we are to be no exception. Changing times call on us to change our perspectives and evolve. In seeking evolution within myself, I learned the power of the word “yes.” I have attended concerts, gatherings, games, festivities and services and met too many people to count through my newly christened sense of adventure and attitude as a go-getter. Quality friendships are not earned fast, but what’s the harm in starting friendships with new kinds?
You never know what you might pick up that could be of use to you in some way. Networking is what landed me a summer internship, and it’s as simple as stepping outside your comfort zone to try something new or make a new friend. Next time a friend invites you to hot yoga three hours before class, instead of making excuses as to your limitations on time, make the effort to say “yes” and accept the challenge. All things might happen for a reason, but all good things are found if you are willing to take the risk to find them.