This is a response to “Spring Break: The Best and Worst Part of College”
From articles on the internet to discussions I’ve heard around campus, the stress surrounding spring break is certainly upon us. Of course, there’s discussing where you and your friends will be traveling, how you’re going to get there, what you’ll be doing, what you should pack, and more. But throughout my college experience, I’ve also heard and felt the stress surrounding body image and the pressure to diet and exercise for months beforehand. There’s also this pressure to break the bank to buy a whole new wardrobe and make it the most perfect trip ever - even if the clothes you have are perfectly fine and you’d rather stay home. But spring break should really be about spending time with the ones that you love, making the most of that time, and taking a break for your mental health, not about changing your whole vibe. These preparations can feel important to some, but shouldn’t be the focus of your spring break.
What matters most about spring break is the memories you make and making the most of the time you have to relax during a challenging semester. Your body is perfect the way it is and so is your style! You shouldn’t have to completely change your appearance due to the stereotypical ideas of spring break that have been instilled in us for decades. As the author notes, this break from classes and responsibilities is unique to the college experience and you should take advantage of this time to make it the best for you. Treating yourself is important but loving yourself for who you are is important too.
Last year, after spending most of my spring breaks at home throughout my life, I spent my spring break in Italy while I was studying abroad. I was so grateful to have the opportunity to go on this trip that I hadn’t thought about whether my body was “in shape” or not, whether my clothes were perfectly in style, or if my friends and I were hitting every single tourist spot. My priorities were to take everything in with appreciation and make special memories, as it was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Also not to lose my passport and eat as much pasta as I could of course. Not being preoccupied with body image and style expectations released the pressure I had felt in the past and having those special moments of appreciation amplified my experience even more. This year my friends and I are headed to New Jersey and although it’s not Italy, I couldn’t be more excited to spend a week with some of my best friends for my last spring break in college.
So this spring break, break away from the stereotypical idea of the need to diet, exercise, and shop to prepare and instead focus on what is best for you. Appreciate your body as it is, not what society thinks it should be. Wear clothes that are your vibe and what make you feel comfortable. Be compassionate with yourself and do what makes you the happiest during your spring break. Reminder: Every body is a beach body. Wear the bikini or whatever you’re comfortable in and have fun! Make it the best week of your spring semester by breaking away from societal pressure.