I’m Audrey Helpburn, The Journal’s resident advice-giver. I answer questions about love, friendship, school, and more to help Queen’s students put their best foot forward on and around campus.
Although I’m not a professional, I aim to give the best advice I can to students who need a bit of guidance. This time around, I’m advising two students who feel they aren’t living their life to the fullest: one who believes they’d be happier dating an old flame, and the other who’s unsure of how to have a fulfilling final year at Queen’s.
I was dating someone in winter semester last year, but we ended things before the summer started because we didn’t want to do long distance. It’s been almost six months, but I still can’t stop thinking about them and haven’t met anyone else.
How do I reach out to restart things?
Baby Come Back
Dear Baby Come Back,
The answer to your problem depends on a lot of factors. Is this person back at Queen’s this year, or would it still be a long distance relationship? How big of a distance are we talking?
If you truly believe this relationship is feasible and that both of you would be willing to commit to it (or at least discuss committing to it) then go for it. Start by asking if you can call them and see what they say. If they’re willing to talk over the phone, take the leap and bring up the idea of getting back together. Don’t worry about sounding pathetic—everyone likes to hear that someone’s been thinking about them.
If it turns out they’ve met someone else or just aren’t interested in long distance, don’t take it personally. Long distance is a huge commitment and some people aren’t prepared for that kind of lifestyle, no matter how they feel about the other person.
Before you make any big decisions, make sure to think about the future of the relationship from your perspective: are you sure it’s something you want to get back into? Six months is not a long time to have not yet met someone else—many people spend years single between relationships, so don’t fret about that.
If it’s taking longer than you expected to get over this person, it doesn’t necessarily mean you should rush to get back together. You may need to try putting yourself out there a little more to get what you want. In the end, it’s something only you can decide.
All the best,
I’m in my final year at Queen’s and I already feel like it’s going too fast.
I’m so focused on my academics and excelling at my extracurricular activities that it feels like I’m pushing everything else to the side. I want this year to be a great one socially and I also need to think about what comes next after I’ve finished my degree.
How do I enjoy fourth year while juggling all my commitments and focusing on the things I need to do?
Dear Off Balance,
I have one piece of concrete advice for you: stop doing your work at Common Ground.
I imagine that (like a lot of other people) you try to get all the things on your to-do list done while surrounded by friends or in busy workspaces. That way, you feel like you’re having fun and making the most of every moment by getting social time in and your work done. The problem is, you probably aren’t doing either very well.
When you try to pack as much as you can into every experience, it’s bound to leave you feeling unsatisfied. You may feel like you didn’t get as much done as you hoped, leaving you to panic about a million things.
Take time by yourself to get the important things done, like schoolwork or applying to grad school. When you section off your time, you’ll feel more balanced, less stressed, and you’ll actually enjoy your social time far more.
Fourth year should be both super busy and super fun. It’s great that you’re so fulfilled and have so much going on in your life, but make sure you take the time to relax and enjoy.
Separate the stress from its release (your social life) so that you don’t wind up getting the two confused.
All the best,
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