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There’s this constant debate in life on whether or not now is the time to open yourself up to the world or to new people. It often feels too scary and like it’s opening too many cans of worms when you decide now is the time to open up to someone. Trust is hard and scary and it’s not something to be taken lightly when someone gives it to you. When you open yourself up to making connections with new people you never know whether or not it’s going to be a bust or if it’s going to be a success. Whether the prospect is a friend or something more, you have to be careful with how much energy and time you put into the new people in your life before you know how long they might be around.

And while it’s not the most fun to open up to the possibility of getting hurt, I’ve come to the realization that when you close yourself off to the rest of the world you’re losing more than you think. Sure, if you’re closed off and you have walls built up you get to avoid ether possibility of getting let down. If you’re closed off you won’t be able to have the experiences of meeting people who could change your life, even if the experience with them was negative. Every relationship with anyone can be a lesson and help you grow into the person you were meant to be. People are going to let you down regardless of what you expect of them to do. It’s best to take the way that those around you are with a grain of salt and try not to build up expectations of how they will be and who they are when you don’t actually know them that well.

Yet, you should not hold yourself to not getting to know anyone at all just because you are afraid of getting hurt, you’ll end up lacking a lot of character growth that you needed to get from these experiences.

Be open enough with yourself and the world to give people a chance to surprise you-but here’s the catch-go into these moment without expecting anything. You expectations will be your downfall even if you don’t see it yet. You can build up ideas of who and what you think someone is before you ever really sit down and get to see them act in real time. These kinds of thoughts will be your downfall as you’ll never really get to see someone for who they are unless you give them the time and space to act how they do ‘behind the scenes.’

While you should lower your expectations for how people will react the longer you know them, you should still keep your expectations high in regards to how those around you treat you and everyone else they know.

You may think you know someone and they can still be a stranger to you and to themselves. It takes a long time to find who you are, and that person is basically undiscovered in college-no matter how true to themselves that person may try to be. And this may be the hardest part about opening up and getting to know someone – they may not even know themselves yet.     

The fear in this sense is knowing that you may get to know people now and they could change in the future to be someone completely different.

UC Berkeley class of 2021. My heart is in the mountains, and with any corgi I see. I'm interested in writing, yoga, running, hiking, boxing, playing piano, music, adventures, and studying psychology and anthropology.
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