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By: Linnita Hosten

The semester is speeding by and Spring is just around the corner! Have you thought about how you will utilize your break?

Although brief, this short period of time may be an opportunity for you to revive and refuel just in time to complete the semester.

Here are 6 ways you can fill up an empty (or half-empty) tank and finish out the semester in good speed:

Visit a Loved One – Not just anyone, but one that puts a smile on your face and a pat on your back. A loved one that always seems to arrange the best words of encouragement at the right time. Make time to pay them a visit. Spend the day. Listen to their stories. Ask them about their post-high school experience. Offer your help in a needed area. Really be present, without the distraction of mobile devices or other attention diverters. Be sure to express your gratitude for their role in your life. Tell them what they mean to you. If able, you can record this moment and store it away to replay on a rainy day.

Volunteer for an Event/Organization – Not just any organization, but one you feel closely connected to. Maybe an organization that you patronized during your childhood. Visit the organization’s website to see if there are any upcoming events or initiatives. If you find something of interest, contact the individual listed on the marketing material and share your interest in volunteering. If you have an existing relationship with an organization, circle back and rekindle ties. Being immersed in mission-driven work can remind us of the larger impact we can have (and do have) in the world.

Schedule a Shadow Day – Is there a brand or corporation that you absolutely love? How cool would it be to see the operations of their business behind the scenes? Not all may have the capacity to host you but, why not ask? There may be someone willing to support your curiosity. Complete the Contact Us form on their website or search for the department contact list. If there is a specific area of the organization that you are interested in, try and find a contact in that department. Be specific and brief about your request to shadow and why. Finally, do not be afraid of the words, “no.” Ask until you receive a “yes.”

Spend Time with Your Hobby – What do you enjoy that you do not have the time to do during the semester? My hobby during college was scrapbooking- a time-consuming arts and craft project I could work on all day. What’s that project for you? Something that is rejuvenating, rewarding and also time-consuming. Spend time working on the project or adding to a current project that you’ve been putting off. After all, nothing makes you feel like a success then finishing something you never have time to do.

Create a Workday Playlist – Let’s face it, there are days when you simply just DO NOT feel in the mood. As busy and fast-paced as my life is- I feel those same feeling probably just as often. My secret is I find intangible things to shift my mood- like music. Thank goodness for Apple Music. This is my mood changer go-to. Researcher and neuroscientist Valorie Salimpoor found that music releases dopamine, the “feel good hormone” that is activated from pleasurable experiences like food or sex. Plain and simple, music changes moods! Try it!

Reflect & Plan for Next Semester – You know the saying, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail–well planning for college is no different. Take some time to reflect on HOW you will complete the semester. What actions will you take to be a more effective leader or a better student in the classroom? What relationships will you be intentional about building? How will you really maximize the remaining few months? Write it down. Share your thoughts with an accountability partner. Post your plan on your room’s wall. Capture your plan in frequently visited places of your phone. In essence, reflect on where you are and what’s next for you. After all, when you plan ahead, you make better decisions and can aim for better outcomes.

Happy Spring Break 🙂

Learn more about Linnita at campuspeak.com/linnita-hosten