For Freshmen. By Freshmen.
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Jan 19 2016
by Kyra Meister

Why You Should Step Out of Your Comfort Zone This Semester

By Kyra Meister - Jan 19 2016

The bags have been packed, the books have been purchased, and the goodbyes have been said. Winter break has come and gone; it's time to head back to our home away from home as we gear up for another semester filled with late nights, study sessions, deadlines, and activities that keep us booked solid. With a month away from school came a month to relax, renew, and reflect before jumping back into the daily grind. We're ready to get back into our old habits and routines in order to start again. But, with a new semester comes a new you. It's not too late to change things up and step outside of your comfort zone. In fact, the time to try something new is just right.

While on break, I thought a lot about my first semester of college. Between moving seven hours away from home and starting a new life with new friends, new classes, and new experiences, I made sure to go into everything with an open mind. I didn't want to rule anything out until I gave it a shot. I wouldn't have tried half the things I did during my first semester were it not for this mindset. I told myself that by stepping out of my comfort zone, I was giving myself the full experience I deserved. It was now or never, and I chose now.

Just because an entire semester has gone by doesn't mean it's too late to step outside your comfort zone and try something new and different. We all got into our own routines last semester. But perhaps it's time to stir the pot a little bit and see what else is out there. Get involved in a club you were hesitant to join your first semester. Go into your professor's office hours, even if you are a little intimidated. Something as simple as trying out a new dining hall can make all the difference. Change is incredibly refreshing every once in a while; it can do us all some good.

If there’s one thing I’ve realized the most, it’s that college is competitive. There are thousands of other people around you who are willing to work just as hard, if not harder, to get whatever it is you are trying to achieve. I think this is the main reason so many of us retreat back into our corner and choose to stick to the status quo. We fear failure and disappointment, and typically back down if there is the slightest chance of either one occurring. When we get in these situations, it’s important to remind ourselves that if we don’t take that chance or see what else is out there, we might never know what it is we’re missing. The clichés that describe these sorts of instances come by the dozens, yet so accurately describe our sentiments towards them.

I still have trouble stepping outside of my comfort zone, but I’m ok with it because I know there’s always room for improvement. With every opportunity comes a chance to do something differently. I’ve decided to usher in the new semester with the continued idea that if I don’t give something a try, I won’t know what I’m missing. Worries, comforts, and fears aside, I’m ready to bolster up my “uncomfort” zone, and I hope you are too.

Lead Image Credit: Flickr

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Kyra Meister - Syracuse University

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