It’s the Little Things
I have learned many things in the last month of college including but not limited to money doesn’t grow on trees, gender-neutral bathrooms are a no-go during the weekend, and climbing in and out of a lofted bed is the most dreadful experience known to man.
The list could go on and on, but I think the biggest lesson I’ve learned is that college can bring on a lot of negativity. If I’m being candid, I have way too much time on my hands, and I’m not sure if any of you can relate, but I like to spend my free time contemplating my being and filling my brain with thoughts of the existential uncertainty of the world.
Although I tend to focus on all the ways my life is tough, I sometimes get enough clarity to realize that there are also a few good things. With that, here are the top 6, because the number 5 is basic, things that are keeping my head above water at the moment.
The first and foremost thing that comes to mind is something that only elite people can relate to: The Office. I feel a bit like a fraud talking about this because I only started watching it a few weeks ago, but when I tell you I have never experienced something so life-changing, I mean it.
The happiness I get from a show about the monotonous job of working at Dunder Mifflin Paper Company can be replaced by nothing else. I sincerely look forward to changing into my comfy clothes, selecting my snack of the night, and curling up in bed every night to watch the love story of Jim and Pam unfold or to see how Michael Scott will naively expose someone in his “family.”
I unabashedly admit that I do romanticize the simplicity of being part of The Office with its mundane day-to-day life.
This brings me to my next topic: routine. I feel like routines always get a bad rap because most people love the idea of spontaneity and change and think of having a consistent routine as boring. I think many people glamorize the idea of having something new to do each day and constantly switching it up because I’m completely comfortable doing the same thing every day.
I love the reliability and stability that comes with knowing exactly what is to come that day. This is also known as being a control freak.
After weeks of trying to understand why I was so anxious all the time, I realized that I had no routine. Following this epiphany, I started doing a few things the same way every morning, and I immediately felt so much better.
I get up at 8 AM, have breakfast with my best friend, Olivia, and then go to the library to do assignments or even just sit and read. This little bit of consistency has allowed me to be more productive and helped me to assess myself in that I now understand I have a control problem.
Moving on, the next item on my list is people-watching. In the last few weeks, I have found myself sitting down in areas that will allow me to watch people and some of you might consider this being a creep, but I find joy in the reality that I have no idea what is going on in a stranger’s life.
I love creating personalities and life stories for the people I observe. The other day I saw a girl and guy sitting on a bench, and I slowly put together a romantic story that could become a New York Times Bestseller which isn’t that big of a deal because I think every book in the history of planet Earth has received this “honor.”
I’m not sure if any of you have heard of the song “People Watching” by Conan Gray, but he has a lyric that goes like this: “I’m only looking just to live through you vicariously.” I completely relate to this line.
This might be a bit TMI, but I don’t think I’ve experienced much of life, so watching others and making up stories allows me to, in a way, create an alternate way for me to live. People-watching is a creative outlet for me because I can let my imagination go wild with what the people around me are doing and going through.
The next topic that has allowed me to find a little more meaning in life is reading. I’ve always been a reader, my qualifications being that I’ve read the Harry Potter series twice and have amassed quite the book collection from classics to adventure to romance.
I love reading because it yet again allows me to experience things I have yet to in real life and gives me a chance to place myself in worlds that I have no way of actually being part of.
Over two weeks, I’ve read about 5 books, and every single one of them has allowed me to submerge myself into a new storyline. I have and will always love the beauty of words and the way they can be put together to create something magical.
Time with Friends
My number five is spending time with friends. I’m not sure how evident it is from all of my previous articles, but I have a bit of a dependability complex. I prefer being around others to being alone because life is just so much more worth living when you have other people to do it with.
Whether it be watching the new Jeffrey Dahmer series on Netflix, studying at the library, or thrifting, I get a lot more satisfaction out of these tasks when my friends are with me.
The last thing on my list is writing these articles. Whenever I’m bored or looking for a procrastination tactic, I usually take out my computer and pick a topic that piques my interest. Putting my thoughts into physical representation is quite a stress reliever for me because I not only get to give my opinion, I get to write. Writing provides comfort to me and having the ability to share it with others makes it that much more worthwhile.
I know college can sometimes seem overwhelming and unbearable, but I promise that if you think about it, you’ll be able to notice a few good things. Finding the small things in life that you can be grateful for is a very valuable skill to have because there isn’t anything wrong with stopping to smell the roses.
You will one, get a lot more happiness and fulfillment out of living, and two, become a lot more optimistic. I encourage you to find 6 things to be grateful for every day: it will make all the difference when you are questioning why you are here: in college or on Earth.