Here at the University of Rochester, we trudge through the majority of both semesters in snow, rain, sleet and below 45 degree temperatures. When the weather finally gets warmer for the last 4 weeks we are here until the fall, most Rochester students kind of forget how to act. Everyone dresses nicer, spends more time outside and spends more time with each other. Something inevitable that happens from that is more dates, leading to the blossoming of a beautiful spring fling. Maybe seeing that kinda stings a little extra this year. A little bit of cynicism tied up with midterm season isn’t exactly a recipe for a casual romance. Whether you’re too busy, too heartbroken or just downright uninterested, here’s how to have a spring fling of your own, in preparation for another hot girl summer per se. Try giving yourself the happiness of a new beginning instead of giving it to another person.
- Freshen Up That Wardrobe
Okay, I’m guilty. This may be my favorite part of a new beginning and investing time into myself. Personally, over the last year my style has fallen very behind. With quarantine, I really had no reason to buy new clothes. But, now that things are opening back up, I’m realizing that a lot of my clothes were cute for 2019 — not so much 2021. Some trends that I’m obsessed with currently are seamless tops, matching sets, longer shorts and cottagecore dresses! It’s hard to find new places to shop at and new trends to try. I’ve been doing a lot of shopping at Zara, Aerie, Garage and H&M, but being open to suggestions for your new style is all part of the process!
- Take Yourself on a Date
It’s a scary thought, being alone in public. I for one usually hate being alone — like the kind of hate where you don’t even want to walk to a restroom in a public place on your own. Again, it’s a part of the process. The age old saying is true: you can’t love anyone unless you love yourself. Part of loving yourself is loving to be with yourself, by yourself. Start small like I am; go through the Starbucks drive through alone, go shopping alone. After you’re comfortable with that, try going for a walk or run. Eventually, you’ll be able to get lunch by yourself and sitting in a restaurant alone surrounded by couples won’t bother you anymore. I’m still working my way through these steps too, but it will all be worth it in the end and make you appreciate experiences with others that much more.
- Stop Saying “No” to Plans
I am a creature of habit. I like my own space, my own routine and to do my own thing on my own time. Sometimes, making plans with friends gets in the way of that and I say “no” a lot more than I would like. In this journey, you should make connections with friends, new and old, who help you to grow as a person and discover yourself. The idea here is to not focus on romance, but how platonic relationships can enhance your relationship with yourself.
- Pick Up a New Hobby
I feel like I haven’t had a real hobby since maybe high school. Once college started, all there was room for was class, studying, eating, working and sometimes sleeping. A lot of the time, what little free time we have left we spend time with our significant other, go on dates or spend time on dating apps. But, a critical thing left out of the equation is you. So, with the free time you have in the day, you should challenge yourself to maybe cook a new recipe, get some new plants, watch a Youtube video on how to sew, pick up that sketchpad you haven’t touched in ages, etc. Try picking one of these things (or anything else you may think of) and do it for a little bit everyday for one week. If you like it, continue it into next week. If you hate it, pick a new hobby for next week. Learning more about your likes and dislikes will grow your expertise as well as your confidence.
- Have a Photoshoot
Take the opportunity to supplement everyone’s instagram feeds with bomb pictures of yourself instead of cute couple’s photos. As adorable as they are, around this time of year they can get tiring. Having a photoshoot could be a great final step in this process, a reward if you will. It can be a great way to combine your new wardrobe with your new ability to be alone in public, or a fun experience to have with a friend. Perhaps, you’ll find out you have a new love for photography. Use this season to your advantage and showcase your confidence with a picture!
Remember to be your own best friend. Even if the thought is daunting, you owe it to yourself to try. If I, a person who loathes change, can do it, so can you. Good luck!