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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Emmanuel chapter.

It is crazy how fast a year can go by, nevermind four! Entering young adulthood, I feel like time has flown by and one year no longer feels like a huge quantity of time. Four years ago, I was ready to graduate high school, with hopes of a great end to my senior year. I could not contain my excitement about going to college and finally being on my own. When the pandemic became a big concern starting in March of 2020, my hopes were put on pause and all future plans no longer seemed definite. I now realize that this time went by so fast because I was completely dissociated, my main priority was just simply getting through the day.

Coming to the realization that perhaps life is very short, I want to work through the existential crisis that I’ve been dealing with for the past years. I feel motivated enough to change and create new habits, and start enjoying life. Here are a few of my goals for creating a better year for myself!


This year, I would love to explore new places, whether it is locally or across the country. I have not had much time to travel since the pandemic restrictions have been lifted and have been dying to go somewhere new. Traveling makes me anxious, but I want to reframe the way that I approach it. Instead of planning rigorously with itineraries, I would like to just like to walk around and explore nature and new places. I hope to explore places like Vermont, Maine, and hopefully the west coast in the future!


I always think that I should read more and never do; my relationship with books has been ruined after years of reading for a grade in school. I loved to read when I was younger and felt so accomplished when I would finish a book or challenge myself with a harder read. I am hoping to regain my enjoyment for reading so I can feel that joy again. It will be helpful for me after I graduate so I can continue to keep my brain stimulated and learning new things.


This is a hobby that I love but have not participated in as much as I would like in the past year. When I am feeling depressed, I no longer feel motivated to do the things that I love. To me, it felt like so much work to pick up my journal and start writing. However, I am able to put whatever I want in my journal, it does not always have to be some dramatic piece of writing. Recently, I enjoy picking it up daily and writing a few sentences about how I feel or just making a quick drawing. It really does not have to be a deep task every time you journal, and I want to continue to make these enjoyable tasks that I find difficult in hard times fun for myself again.

Yoga and Meditation

Meditation has been a helpful strategy for relieving stress and I have been practicing it for years. Though, I recognize that it is not easy to stay mindful and still all the time. Mixing deep breathing with some simple yoga stretches feels amazing, especially if you are feeling tension throughout your body. For me specifically, I like to focus on opening my shoulders, back, hips, and wherever I find I am feeling the most tense. You do not always have to follow a specific workout and do it for 30+ minutes, it can be a quick stretch, even in bed!

I wrote this article in hopes of setting my intentions and maybe inspiring others who have felt the similar dread for the past years. This is not health advice by any means, it is simply what I have found that is helpful for me, which I know is not what may work for others. Overall, I have so much to look forward to in 2024; I am graduating college in May and am hoping to progress with my future career and academic goals. I want to focus on the fun and joy that is to come for this year!

Haley Clement is a third-year student at Emmanuel College, majoring in Psychology (Counseling & Health) and Sociology (Social Justice & Social Inequality). She enjoys art, music, film, and crafts! Check out Haley’s articles below.