Learning to know yourself and others at the semester’s start

by Caleb Schrock-Hurst – Horizon Columnist

After a year of college, I would like to be able say that I know what it’s all about.

But truthfully, I can’t. I still know exceptionally little.

Luckily, I did learn a few things, some the easy way and some the hard way, and from my meager experiences I’d like to share a few thoughts on this whole college thing. Hopefully you can glean something useful, whether you are a sophomore like me or a freshman like I was only 12 short months ago.

1) Learn to know yourself. The main impact of college, no matter what you think it should be, is to help you figure out who you are and to help you become your adult self. This happens through class discussions, midnight trips to Druber’s, intramurals and sports, obscenely long papers, endless loads of laundry, and countless other experiences you’ll have at college. In the midst of all this change that is happening make sure you are actively trying to become who you want to be. Invest in things you want to invest in. Read. Journal. Volunteer. By taking time to try and understand how you are changing as you learn and mature you will become more self-aware and satisfied with who you have become.

2) Obey the 30 day rule. If you haven’t heard of it yet, you soon will, but this utterly unofficial rule states that you shouldn’t date in the first 30 days of school. (Sidebar-this is also basically a good idea in all of life; you probably shouldn’t date people you’ve known for less than 30 days.) The reason this is so important at college is that one-on-one time with someone, especially a special someone at the beginning of a relationship, will take a huge chunk of your time away from learning to know the campus body. Be aware of not spending all of your time with one person or even one friend group. Hesston is a great place to meet people, but as the year goes on it becomes more and more difficult to do so, and, as I discovered this week, not knowing your classmates names after a year together is quite awkward. Please avoid this needless pain and get to know everyone while you have the chance.

3) Take time for yourself. Hanging out with people all the time is not always the easiest, and if you need some time alone, make it happen. Breaks from schoolwork are definitely needed, but also don’t be afraid to take breaks from social media, Netflix, and other hidden stressors. A night off from homework every so often won’t kill you, and neither will a night away from your friends or phone.

4) Invest in and trust your friends while always adding new ones. One conversation over supper can form an amazingly strong connection, and the simple fact is that in life making friends won’t always be this easy. Take advantage of this fact and don’t shut people out. Be open to new things and unique, life-changing relationships can form at any moment.

So as you start your semester, remember not to lose track of the person you want to be and to try and befriend as many people as possible.

Oh, and you probably should go to class.

Caleb Schrock-Hurst is a Sophomore at Hesston College where he works as a Writing Assistant, Ministry Assistant, and Horizon contributor. He would like to study everything, but when forced to choose selected English, History, and Music. Outside of academics his main interests are tennis, Bernie Sanders’ political campaign, the global church, and Arsenal Football Club. Feel free to contact him at caleb.schrock-hurst@hesston.edu or find him on campus if you wish to exchange verbal or physical blows.


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