For most college students, summer has a variety of purposes. For some, it's an opportunity to work more and save up some money or volunteer to get in some extra hours. For others, it's an opportunity to lay back and just enjoy the sun and live life to the fullest. For me, I always thought my summers had to be one way or the other, and so I always leaned toward the side of working more, taking more classes, and extra volunteer hours.

But, because of that, I felt like my summers rushed by and I had no crazy summer memories. I felt like I had spent my summer working, and I was okay with that because I felt it was a mature decision. Focusing on my future, focusing on my academics and my career, it was a sacrifice that had to be made to get what I dream of. But does it have to be a sacrifice?

As college students, and as young adults, we are so hard on ourselves to be put into this timeline. We're surrounded by people inventing new technology at 14 and being billionaires by their early twenties. But where along the way did we forget that we're still supposed to live? Life isn't just about being successful or making a name for yourself. It's about connection, romance, and memories. It's about taking advantage of the life you've been given and truly living, not just passing time.

So if you ever needed a sign that this summer is your opportunity to take your life back, focus on what you're passionate about, and live your life to its fullest, this is it. Say yes to a 2:00 a.m. adventure. Say yes to random road trips, or an unexpected date. Life is too short to do anything but live, so put down the laptops, cell phones, and distractions, and appreciate all that life has to offer.