Advice for Awkward People

Dear Izzy,

I’ve been having, well, sort of a really weird, deep problem lately. Ever since I’ve come to college, I’ve made a ton of new friends and have gotten the chance to open up to people and just grow as a person. But, I feel like I am spending too much time with them. To rephrase it, I feel like I haven’t been able to spend time with myself lately. I used to be a completely different, shy person in high school. That changed almost immediately once I got to college, went through Orientation Week, and met a lot of my current friends (just part of the typical freshman experience). I don’t know why I’ve lately began to feel like I’ve lost touch with myself. It seems especially weird, since I’m halfway through my second semester, so you’d think I’d have enough time to process this because Orientation Week was so long ago and I’ve had at least one semester under my belt. And, it’s not like I don’t appreciate my friends; maybe I’m just having a hard time balancing a social life since I’ve never really had one before. Is there anything you can recommend I do?

Missing Every Time Introvert Mindset Exists


It’s awesome to hear how much you’ve blossomed and grown in college already, and that you seem to be going through a smooth transition! That fact alone can be surprisingly comforting in hard times, and I’m glad you’ve built up a strong support network that you can fall back on if you need to. However, I will agree that taking time for yourself is important too.

Every week, try to find some time — it doesn’t have to be long, and can be from 10 minutes to three hours — to just spend with yourself. Take a step back from everything going on in your life and focus on YOU: what do you specifically want to do in that moment? What do you enjoy doing? If it’s watching Netflix, great. If it’s reading Harry Potter for the 13th time, great. Heck, even if it’s doing work, that’s fine too, as long as it’s something you enjoy doing by yourself. I’ve been setting aside some time to plan out my schedule for the future, and it’s a great trick for laying out any personal goals and staying on top of things.

The question on how to balance your social life is a little bit harder to answer, because honestly, I’m still going through this myself. Sometimes it’ll help to just analyze your week and sort of assess how you spend your time on work, friends, and on yourself. From there, you can then move on to adjust your organization of time as necessary. Just remember too that you are defining your own balance, and make sure to be a fair judge for yourself. And hopefully, after looking at your schedule, you’ll be able to carve out the me time that you definitely deserve.

Hope this helps!