I have been back to school for about a week and a half, and after having most of the week off because of snow, I have definitely had some time for reflection. Here are the things that I have realized and learned after being back to school from my first winter break:
1. Slow Down
Before winter break had even officially arrived, I had already made so many plans with my home friends that I began to get anxious with so much going on. Anxious to get home, and anxious to follow through with everyone, when in reality I should have just been excited to get home and be away from the stress of schools and finals. You may begin to feel like your time home is slipping away from you, but you do not need to rush to try to do everything in one weekend. You have a month to be home, and it will be a much, much more enjoyable month if you just take a second to appreciate the time you have rather than spending so much of your time worried about the future.
2. If it's Going to Happen, it Will
Let's face it, not everyone you were friends with in high school will still stay in touch, and not everyone is going to have as much time to hang out with you as you may have planned. That is okay. You absolutely cannot force friendships that aren't willing to collaborate from both sides. Especially since it probably will have nothing to do with you. Take some time to be moody about it and move on, because you only have a month a home. In the long run, you are going to regret using so much wasted energy on something that just isn't going to work, out no matter how much you will it to. Appreciate the people who do give you their time and move on.
3. Appreciate and Spend Time with Your Family
Frankly, I didn't see my family quite as much as I probably should have. It's not that I didn't miss them, because of course I did, but I definitely thought I had a lot more time than I really did to hang out with them. When you go back to school, you will miss family dinner, your little sister's middle school stories, your dog, and even the drama. Of course, seeing your friends is something that you immediately are going to what to do, but keep in mind that your family is missing you just as much as your friends have, and you need to make just as much time for them.
4. Take Time to Focus on Yourself
Not every second of the waking day has to be spent hanging out with people or going places. Yes, you are going to want to see you friends, and yes, your hometown may seem a little more boring than it did previously, and you're just trying to get out of the house, but trust me. Take time to learn how to be appreciative of how much time you now have on your hands and focus on how to be alone. You are going to be so much more refreshed when you go back to school. Although this may feel weird, since this is such a difference from the semester, you are going to regret not taking time for yourself when exams and essays start creeping their way back into your life.