Well it's official. I have been living in a college dorm for one week now, and I have learned a myriad of things about myself, my roommate, the people on my floor, and the world around me. One particular lesson that has surfaced since I've been here at Rochester Institute of Technology is the importance of networking and connecting with others both intentionally and actively. I almost feel that the previous statement is redundant, because to be an effective social being requires effort (and sometimes a lot of it). Once you have established a solid posse, then you can relax a little. But until that point, one must focus a lot of energy into meeting people who share common interests and have at least somewhat similar worldviews and paradigms. And even when you have a solid group of friends, you can't simply sit back passively and watch. You must get engaged and delve into your life, not sit back and wait for good things to approach you.
One idea that I have been constantly reminding myself of is the fact that for every minute I spend alone, I am subtracting an entire minute that could have been spent making new friends or rekindling old friendships. While I do think that some alone time each day is important, I also know that too much is not only unhealthy but also unproductive. Humans are relational creatures, made to connect with others and be in community with loved ones. With that said, I am proud to say that I have made the most of this past week, seizing every potential opportunity to make a new friend. And my hard work has paid off already. I am looking forward to many, many more weeks of intentionality and networking. Cheers to starting college off right!