It’s the collegiate equivalent of New Year’s Day. When you’re starting out at the beginning of the school year, your ambitions are high, your fear of failure is nonexistent, and you’re feeling motivated to take on everything. Our advice? Take on everything. Now’s the time to pursue -- or at least, make a list of -- all of the things you want to try and tackle this year.
Need help getting started? If you’re struggling trying to figure out what to want, we’ve laid the groundwork for you. Here’s GreekRank’s schoolyear bucket list.
10. Learn a musical instrument. Buy a secondhand guitar online or scout your local music shops to see what instruments are on sale. Girls love a guy who can play guitar. Learn on your own time through any of the thousands of instructional videos made available on YouTube. Feeling adventurous? Join the on-campus drum group and see what kind of spiritual circles that lands you in.
9. Master a meal. Have at least one good, gourmet dish in your cooking repertoire. If you can win over his stomach, you can win over his heart. Learn how to make a fancy-sounding, French dish like ratatouille or steak tartare -- and if you’re still in the dorms, we have full faith you can create a proper croque monsieur (essentially a grilled ham and cheese sandwich) in a microwave. Really ready to impress? Buy a blow torch and churn out creme brulee’s for the floor.
8. Audit your personal style. Not applicable if your friends are already paying you to be their personal stylist, but for those who don’t look twice (or even once) in a mirror before heading to class, consider paying a bit more attention to how you look. It doesn’t seem like a big deal now, but getting in the habit of presenting yourself in an attractive way has pay-off’s, and we mean more than just a weekend date.
7. Ask someone out who you normally wouldn’t. Hear us out on this one. We don’t simply mean asking out that cute girl in class you’ve been eyeing. We’re talking about far-reach asks. Ask out someone you wouldn’t think too because they seem “out of your league,” or consider asking out that guy you'd otherwise never see yourself with, the one with all of the tattoos, piercings and makeup or the jock. Not because you’re totally interested in dating them, but because it’ll be worthwhile in helping you determine all of the things you do and don’t want in a partner. By the time you’re 30, you’ll have this well-figured out. Start now and date outside of your comfort zone.
6. Take a class that's not required that you’re interested in. You should be doing this anways. Even if a certain class isn’t a requirement or even an suggested elective for your major or minor, take a class in a field or topic that’s always been of interest -- but not something you ever thought you could pursue professionally. Southeast Asia Religions? Art History in the Post-Renaissance Era? Broaden your perspective by including a a class that’s far from required but always been an interest.
5. Plan a trip. We promise you don’t need a huge budget for this. Even if it means renting camping gear from your campus rec center (yeah, you can actually do that), or borrowing your uncle’s timeshare for the weekend, plan a vacation the next time you have a long weekend. You don’t need to be an adult with a huge wallet to rationalize why you need a vacation. See what cheap AirBNB’s are available in a nearby hipster city, or look at primitive cabin rentals in your closest national park.
4. Go to a sporting event you wouldn’t normally. There’s no question how you’re spending fall gameday Saturday’s. But see what the schedule looks like for other division (or club) sports at your school. Played soccer through high school but fell off since you got to college? Go watch the women’s team play your school’s rival. Always had an interest in rugby? Catch the men’s team at their next big tourny. Then consider trying out.
3. Be sober-curious. It may be the hardest thing you’ve ever done. Go a week, or two, or a month without drinking alcohol. You’ll be amazed at how difficult it actually is, especially if your social calendar is usually pretty filled with boozy happenings. The clarity of mind and laser-sharp focus you’ll feel might have you wanting to try sobriety longterm!
2. Try a club. If you’re an upperclassmen and have found yourself settling into a groove of classes, part time jobs, friends, and parties, branch out of your routine by sitting in on a club meeting. If you’ve always wanted to write but found yourself penning creative nonfiction in only your journal, try participating in a literary club or other publication at your school.1. Ask a professor out for coffee. Is there an instructor who you legitamately think is the coolest? A professor who’s work you admire? Just a chill TA you could be friends with? Develop relationships with the people who are teaching you. At worst, you’ll get a sobering bit of their perspective on what their field/study/industry is like, and at best, you get a solid recommendation and reference for when you start applying for jobs.