In honor of the new year and the living legend’s birthday, here are some tips to jump start your next 365 days (minus 16).
Unhappy with your life? You don’t have to be — change it. Try finding a club to join. After all, many are open to new members year round. Or, try attending an on-campus event. If you’re one of the many people who has resolved to lose or gain weight for the new year, you can see a nutritionist at the Student Health Center to discuss healthy options, join an intramural sport, or consult one of the personal trainers that work in the Student Life Center.
Be a Hero
(Just for One Day)
Do something spontaneous! Go sledding, try snowboarding, or go out on a late night adventure somewhere. The cold is going to be around for a few more months, so try to enjoy it. If you find something positive about it, it won’t seem as bad.
Be a hero and volunteer your time to improve the lives of others or work for a charity. RIT Leadership Institute and Community Service Center actually has a list of volunteer work that is available during the school year. If you like to work with your hands, try helping with Habitat for Humanity. If you love animals, work with one of the many adoption agencies around the Rochester area. The work may not be your favorite thing to do on a weekend or weeknight, but, all in all, you can feel proud knowing you have helped improve your community.
Alright, maybe try something a little less extreme as wearing tights. But Bowie did in Labyrinth and the movie was a huge success. Try showing off a special talent or take a stab at a new look (but please, try to avoid mullets and hairspray). Being eccentric helps liberate a uniqueness and creative side in you that will lead to a happier and much more interesting lifestyle.
(and Super Creeps)
Yes, random neck-bearded guy, I’m talking to you. I see how you Facebook-stalked that one girl in class and googled her name. Stop it! You can’t woo her that way (of course, that’s assuming she knows you exist). While you’re at it, quit raiding four-plus nights a week in World of Warcraft and watching the most recent superhero movie on repeat — get out and speak to someone “irl” (in real life).
Filling your heart doesn’t have to mean just having a significant other. Fill your life with friends and always try to meet new people. By forcing yourself into awkward situations and conversations with strangers, you can develop a relaxed disposition (which can help when talking to or asking out that certain someone, if you must).
Dare to Daydream
Have a Moonage Daydream! Imagine you’re an alligator, a space invader or whatever you can think up. Daydreams tend to be connected to happy, hopeful or ambitious emotions and range from reminiscing on the past to imagining the future. A lecture that is tough to get through can go by faster by engaging the mind and diverting feelings of anxiety and depression. Daydreaming can be constructive in some contexts, such as developing new ideas for film, literature, mathematics and scientific research.
College is the last opportunity for irresponsibility without consequence and not having to deal with reality. If you live on campus, most bills are taken care of by one lumped sum at the beginning of each quarter, which, for many of us, is paid for by our parents.
College is the only time where individuals can be drunk every day and not be frowned upon as an alcoholic. Before you know it, we’ll all be trapped into 9-5 schedules in the real world with financial stress and little time or energy for fun. Enjoy college while it lasts — these are your golden years.
Challenge established ideas. Be innovative and creative when attacking projects and problems. Stop caring about what others might think about you. Rebel against your normal expectations, change your appearance for a day to see the response, or try a new programming language or an unusual photography technique. Select a movie or food you’d never usually pick, or do something completely compulsive and selfish.
Music and color is a great way to change your mood. Try downloading a new artist or find new music through Pandora or Last.fm. Add color to your dorm or apartment room by buying a new bright colored blanket, an array of posters, or a lamp to warm the room up. Color is a great way to subliminally lift your moods in the dull Rochester winter.
Wal-Mart and Target have a lot of cheap things for your room. For example, super-soft fleece blankets run at around $10 at Target and, with Christmas behind us, strings of lights run around $6 for every 20 feet. Lights are a good alternative to the computer glow and fluorescent lighting and all you need to put them up is tacks. The more welcoming and homey the room looks, the happier you’ll be (and the more likely floor mates might stop in for a visit).
Hang Onto Yourself!
The winter quarter is halfway over, which means the academic year is half over as well. Halfway through the year, halfway through the workload — try to keep up your motivation and morale. As tough as it may be to push yourself to get every last homework assignment done, your commitment will pay off.