The Necessity of Maintaining Spontaneity in the Routine of College Life
By Carlos Lopez
Throughout your senior year of high school, you’ve heard all about the new experiences that await you at college, and the importance of learning how to balance that with schoolwork. While students face lots of temptation to get involved with as many student organizations and try as many new things as possible, it’s important to establish a routine to keep you on track. There’s something really helpful about structure, and with the independence given to you in college, creating a routine helps to keep you on top of your work. Even with all the structure, it’s important to remember how excited you were when you first started college. It’s important not to lose sight of the way you looked at this next journey as a high school senior, idealizing all the possibilities for experiences you could create and people you’d meet. The grind of daily college life can create a monotonous routine of going to classes and going straight home, but if you pull yourself out of that mindset, there are countless experiences that await you.
Though the amount of clubs and organizations available to you can be daunting, there’s no harm in checking them out; it’s by no means a commitment to anything. Even if you do decide to commit, many clubs meet so sporadically that you’d only be committing yourself to a few hours a month. The knowledge and relationships you gain from those few hours can build networks and create memories that’ll prove to be crucial to your collegiate experience. For example, a group that seems outside of your realm of interest might create encounters that change the way you think entirely. Something as simple as yoga in Monroe Park can help you become more self-aware, spark an interest in meditation, and introduce you to groups of people whose paths you might otherwise never cross.
While clubs and organizations can seem intimidating and exclusive, you can’t let it stop you from stepping outside of your comfort zone. You get out what you put into them, so push yourself to get intimately involved, and even challenge yourself to take part in running the group! Holding a position on the executive board helps you flex your leadership muscles, and is the perfect resume booster, making you attractive to future employers. If you genuinely don’t enjoy your experience in the organization, then no harm, no foul, but college is about trying new things and figuring out what’s right for you, just like the rest of the student body! If organizations on campus aren’t your thing, or if you’re not connecting with anyone in the way you’d hoped, try your hands at things happening in Richmond. Whether it be political action groups, art shows, or even just game nights at Gallery 5, putting yourself out there in any manner will be an incredibly positive experience for you.
The grind of college can wear students down to the point where the daily routine becomes isolating. Despite that, you have to fight that urge to crawl into bed and binge watch your new favorite TV show. Get out and get involved in your college and the surrounding city; tons of experiences await just outside your door, and college is one of the only times in your life where you have access to a wealth of resources, opportunities, and chances to have as many “firsts” as possible. When you look back on your collegiate career, you won’t remember how much rest you got or how many shows you watched while hiding out in your dorm. Take a chance on creating a college career you’re proud of. Is it worth passing up a potential passion just because you’re tired?