I recently had a conversation with someone about the task of finding your place, that spot where people know you and you want to be. College forces teenagers to becomes adults. We learn to juggle jobs, classes, sleeping, and studying — and it can be stressful. That’s why it’s important to have a space that can serve as your home base. Resting and restorative practices like yoga are important. But so is community and fellowship. Here are some options for a good home base and some tips for finding that base.
- Exercise Places: This can be the Rec/IM but it can also be yoga studio or a workout group that meets in a church basement (I’ve tried all of these and they are all great options!). Try to find groups that you can work out with and get to know. As people begin to expect to see you there, you will have a sense of accountability, making it easy to stay healthy.
- Hobby Classes: Places like Cultivate Coffee and Tap House and the Literati host community classes that are free or low cost. You can meet people and mingle while you learn a new skill together like knitting or calligraphy.
- Interest Clubs: Do you like to read? Start a book club! Do you like superheroes? Start a discussion group! Do you like to cook? Start a dinner party club! If you meet people in your classes who have similar interests, bring everyone together and start a community space where everyone can both share and gain knowledge.
- Coffee Shops or Restaurants: If you can find a spot that has good food and drinks, has a nice vibe, and attracts cool people, make that your spot! Places around Ypsilanti tend to attract regulars and the workers are from the community.
Now you might be wondering why you should put in so much effort just to find a place to hang out. Here are three reasons:
- Finding a home base in the community means you are a member of the community. You’ll get to know Ypsilanti and have a good reason to leave campus sometimes.
- Winter is coming. Having a space that feels welcoming during the cold months can be a great comfort as the days get shorter and the holidays end.
- Fellowship is a form of therapy. First, see someone at CAPS if you need to talk. Second, making friends out in the community that you can keep up with is a good way to keep your mental health in check.
[Photo Credit: Zalarie Unique]