How to Find Yourself in Seven Days: A Challenge

To very accurately quote Tears for Fears, “It’s a mad world.” Sometimes, it feels like all around us are worn out faces and worn out places. Running around in circles like rats on campus from one obligation to the next, especially as we approach the mid point of the semester, is enough to make any of us burnt out. To quote my best friend, “you are so f*ckin’ cracked out.” 

With all of this stress—mixed with other external factors—our relationships may begin to strain. Friction may arise and we may wonder who our real friends are, who’s “fake,” and whether we really enjoy their company or not. All this can also just be a reflection of our relationship with ourselves, the most important of all. 

It is usually ourselves who we neglect the most. Shunning our souls, what we need and overloading on work by day, then trying to forget about it by surrounding ourselves with people by night makes for an unhealthy concoction. In this overwhelming coping mechanism we forget who we are. We may even fall out of love with ourselves. 

To help myself out, as well as my fellow Hawks, through this epidemic before we tweak, I’ve come up with a seven day challenge. You don’t have to do all seven days. Just trying one or two of them can be an accomplishment for someone who wouldn’t normally do this, but hopefully by the end we appreciate ourselves more. 

Monday: It’s the start of the week, so let’s get a headstart by visiting a cafe. Let whatever mess you got into over the weekend be bygones and put on your Monday’s best. Sit yourself down, yes, you, all alone, at a coffee shop of choice. I’d prefer something in town, perhaps Cafeteria, but you can choose Karma Road if that’s more of your cup of tea. If town is too far, try Truth. Anything but the Grand Central-esque Starbucks on campus where you’re bound not only to see someone you know, but be left without a seat.

Tuesday: Ok you’re probably getting a little busy now. However, I give you arguably the most daunting challenge in my opinion: hitting the gym. Whether you push yourself and go for 30 minutes or you’re already a gymholic, JUST DO IT. I know the ~alone~ part may make it tough, but you’re the only one who has to live with your body. 

Wednesday: Oof. I don’t know your schedule, but you have to be either drowning in either homework by now, or you have the day off. Either way, let’s not forget to eat, okay? I challenge you to go out and eat a meal alone. Anywhere is alright, just don’t sit in your room. Double points if you venture out to Has! (Or should I call it Peregrine now?)

Thursday: It’s the home stretch. It’s Friday eve. We can do it. Let’s be proactive and finish things (or get a headstart if you already have your life together?) before the weekend starts. Go to the library. Sit alone. Put up a sign that says, “don’t talk to me” if you have to. I don’t care how, but work on at least one major assignment today. Then pat yourself on the back, bud.

Friday: Ah, I’m in love. Let us visit the Dorsky, why don’t we? I bet most of you haven’t ventured in there besides to take a short cut from the SUB to the library. Feed your soul and mind and take in some art, let yourself be touched by someone you’ve never even met and remind yourself that we are smaller than we make ourselves to be. 

Saturday: Depending on whether you’re recovering from the previous week, the previous night or having a lazy day, try to forget about the world by going on a hike. I know it’s cold, but bundle up and hit any one of the trails that weave in and out of our quaint little campus. A simple walk in nature to collect your thoughts never hurt anybody. 

Sunday: Ironically the day of rest, but the day we all push our responsibilities on to, will be for chores. You know it feels good: blasting your favorite tunes, mindlessly sweeping or vacuuming, tidying up all the clothes that end up piled on that one chair, doing laundry, then giving yourself a long hot shower. Ah.

Mahnoor Ali
About Mahnoor Ali 46 Articles
Mahnoor Ali is a fourth-year English major with a concentration in creative writing and a minor in women’s, gender, and sexuality studies. This is her third semester with the The Oracle. Previously, she has worked as Assistant Copy Editor and Features Editor. Her favorite stories to both read and write about are Culture, Entertainment, Lifestyle, and Columns, with an appreciation for News and social issues.