Disclaimer: Brace yourself, ladies, I’m about to get really corny.

I hate cliché sayings and advice as much as the next person, but I have to be honest with you… sometimes a little distance is all you need to have some clarity.

Distance truly has the potential to help clear up some of those weird intangible feels we all deal with sometimes. Distance from exactly what, I’m not so sure, that’s for you to find out. For me, what unexpectedly helped was a combination of going out with my roomie to a fun, super small concert on a Friday night, then spending my Saturday occupying my time with exercising, working, and volunteering, plus giving myself some space from another individual.

I distanced myself physically by getting off campus and going to one of my happy places: a concert. There’s a slightly indescribable feeling of a song being performed so loudly you literally feel it in your soul (if you know, you know), and that feeling is one that makes me feel the most alive. And God bless Charlotte Lawrence because, wow, that was one of the most fun concerts I’ve been to recently.

I distanced myself from schoolwork by taking some me time and throwing myself into both work and play. I finally got back to teaching ice skating lessons, and nothing sparks joy like little kids telling you ice is, indeed, slippery and cold.

I distanced myself emotionally by putting the phone down, encouraging myself to stop dictating my actions around anyone who isn’t me, and managing to avoid those thoughts of “I wonder what _______ would think about this, that, or the other thing.” I let myself live in the moment and focus on enjoying it.

As cliché as it sounds, distance can be a lifesaver. Tonight, I don’t feel sad that I’m not hanging out with a certain person, I’m grateful that I have some me time; I feel less tense and more at peace, something I haven’t felt in a few months. I’m remembering where my priorities lie, and finally not feeling like I’m sacrificing anything to respect those priorities.

I encourage you to find some healthy distance if you too are dealing with the icky feelings you can’t quite understand. I hope that you can find ways to spend more time doing the things you love and doing them for you! Because nothing helps you become more in touch with yourself than getting away from the mundane and doing something you forgot you love doing. That might mean you pick up a book you loved years ago and reread it and fall in love all over again. It might mean taking a day trip into Center City and seeing what adventures find you. It might mean finding a club or activity to invest your time in, writing freely to work out your emotions, or scheduling in some restorative yoga into your busy life. Whatever makes you feel the most alive, the most in touch with yourself and the world around you, do it. <3