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5 Reasons To Choose A College Away From Home

5 Reasons To Choose A College Away From Home

Finishing high school is such a great accomplishment but before you’re out the door you’re bombarded with college applications and constantly pressured to jump right into college after high school. Everyone from your parents, your high school teachers and even your friends are pushing higher education down your throat and it has left a sour taste in your mouth. Sound familiar?

A gap year after high school isn’t uncommon. For a lot of us the threat of disappointing our parents or possibly losing funding for college is scarier than making the jump into a college when all we want is to go out on our own for awhile before falling in line for another four or more years.

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Luckily there is a middle ground that will be sure to quench some of your thirst for wanderlust. Choosing a college away from home satisfies the parentals and the distance creates a space for growth, freedom, and a chance to find out who you are without the influence of friends and family. Here are 5 reasons why I think making the choice to leave home for college was the best choice for me.

1. Distance Makes The Heart Grow Fonder

I grew up in a family of five. I could not wait to get away. I couldn’t wait to have my own space, my own things, my own schedule that didn’t revolve around anyone else. After a while being away wasn’t just good for my need for freedom and wanderlust it gave me a chance to miss those I care about. I had a chance to reflect and appreciate the quirks that make my family and friends so special. When I came back to visit, it seemed like I was not the only one either because it was always the best catching up face to face.

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2. New Culture

The culture from state to state and especially coast to coast is so different. Choosing a school out of your comfort zone is necessary if you are looking to create unique memories of your own and meet new people. Going to a school with the same cultural ideals and ethnicities that you’ve been used to is not going to do the trick. Choose somewhere that will give you the opportunity to experience things in a whole new way.

3. Ability To Travel

Granted it’s not Europe or South America but it is still not the same town you grew up in with the same people you grew up with. If you took my advice you’ve chosen a school that has the atmosphere and people that will open your eyes to a whole new world of foods, traditions and people anyway.

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4. Networking Is Key

Towards the end of your college career every advisor and professor will stress how important networking is in the professional world. Of course you need to be qualified for the job but if you have a reference from someone the likelihood of you landing that job rises exponentially. Leaving your hometown to go to college elsewhere creates an even larger umbrella of people you know that you can potentially use as future references.

5. Tuition Breaks

There is a common misconception that out-of-state tuition is more costly than in-state. Granted sometimes that is true, but not always. There are a lot out-of-state options that are cheaper and offer out of state scholarships.  Like Walsh said, “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone,” so push boundaries, experience life in new ways with new interesting people, and create a space of self growth for yourself. Regardless of what people tell you, it is possible, do the research, make a choice and get the grades all on your own.

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Last Updated on October 17, 2019

How to Spend More Quality Time with Your Partner

How to Spend More Quality Time with Your Partner

You see your partner every single day. They are the first person you talk to in the morning and the last person you kiss goodnight.

But does seeing each other day in and day out equal a healthy relationship? Not necessarily.

Spending quality time with your partner is the best way to ensure your relationship stays healthy and strong. This means going above and beyond sitting together while you watch Netflix or going out for the occasional dinner. You deserve more from your relationship – and so does your spouse!

What does quality time mean? It means spending time with your spouse without interruption. It’s a chance for you to come together and talk. Communication will build emotional intimacy and trust.

Quality time is also about expressing love in a physical way. Not sex, necessarily (but that’s great, too!) but through hand-holding, cuddling, caressing, and tickling. Studies show that these displays of affection will boost partner satisfaction.[1]

So how do you spend quality time with your partner? Here are 13 relationship tips on making the most out of your time with your partner.

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1. Recognize the Signs

If you want a healthy relationship, you have to learn how to recognize the signs that you need to spend more quality time together.

Some telltale signs include:

  • You’re always on your phones.
  • You value friendships or hobbies over quality time with your spouse.
  • You aren’t together during important events.
  • You are arguing more often or lack connection.
  • You don’t make plans or date nights.
  • You’re not happy.

If you are experiencing any of these relationship symptoms, know that quality time together can reverse the negative effects of the signs above.

2. Try New Things Together

Have you ever wanted to learn how to play an instrument or speak another language? How about skydive or ballroom dance?

Instead of viewing these as solo hobbies and interests, why not involve your partner?

Trying new activities together builds healthy relationships because it encourages spouses to rely on one another for emotional and physical support.

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Shared hobbies also promote marital friendship, and the Journal of Happiness Studies found that marital satisfaction was twice as high for couples who viewed each other as best friends.[2]

3. Schedule in Tech-Free Time

Your phone is a great way to listen to music, watch videos, and keep up-to-date with friends and family. But is your phone good for your relationship?

Many couples phone snub, or ‘phub’, one another. Studies show that phubbing can lower relationship satisfaction and increase one’s chances of depression.[3]

Reduce those chances by removing distractions when spending quality time together and showing your partner they have your full attention.

4. Hit the Gym as a Couple

One way you can spend more time together as a couple is by becoming workout partners. Studies show that couples are more likely to stay with their exercise routine if they work out together.[4] Couples also work out harder than they would solo. One study found that 95 percent of couples who work out together maintained weight loss compares to the 66 percent of singles who did.[5]

Join a gym, do at-home couples’ workouts, try couples yoga, hit the hiking trails, or get your bikes out. No matter which way you choose to exercise, these healthy activities can promote a healthy relationship.

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5. Cook Meals Together

Pop open a bottle of wine or put some romantic music on while you get busy – in the kitchen, of course!

One of the best relationship tips for spending quality time together when you both have busy schedules is to cook meals together.[6]

Spice things up and try and prepare a four-course meal or a fancy French dish together. Not only is this a fun way to spend your time together, but it also promotes teamwork.

If all goes well, you’ll have a romantic date night meal at home that you prepared with your four hands. And if the food didn’t turn out the way you’d hoped, you are guaranteed to have a laugh and create new memories together.

6. Have a Regular Date Night

Couples experience a greater sense of happiness and less stress when they are spending quality time together.[7] One of the biggest relationship tips for a healthy partnership is to include a date night in your weekly routine.

The National Marriage Project found that having a weekly date night can make your relationship seem more exciting and helps prevent relationship boredom.[8] It also lowers the probability of divorce, improves your sex life, and increases healthy communication.

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Some great ideas for what to do on your date night include:

  • Have a movie marathon – Gather up your favorite flicks and cuddle up on the couch.
  • Play games together – Cards, board games, video games, and other creative outlets are a fun way to spend quality time together.
  • Recreate your first date – Go back to that restaurant and order the same meal you did when you first got together. You can spice up your evening by pretending you’re strangers meeting for the first time and see how sexy the night gets.
  • Plan a weekend getaway – There’s nothing better than traveling with the one you love.
  • Dinner and a movie – A classic!
  • Try a new restaurant – Make it your mission to rate and try all of the Mexican restaurants/Irish pubs/Italian trattorias in your area.
  • Have a long sex session – Intimacy promotes the release of the oxytocin hormone which is responsible for a myriad of great feelings.[9]

Here’re even more date night ideas for your reference: 50 Unique and Really Fun Date Ideas for Couples

Final Thoughts

The benefits of spending quality time together are endless. Here are just some of the ways it can contribute to a healthy relationship:

  • Improves emotional and physical intimacy
  • Lowers divorce rates
  • Improves communication
  • Reduces marital boredom
  • Bonds couples closer
  • Improves friendship
  • Boosts health
  • Reduces stress

These are all excellent reasons to start making date night a regular part of your week.

It’s easy to have a healthy relationship when you set aside dedicated time to share with your spouse. Try new things together, make your spouse your workout buddy, and look for innovative ways to be close and connected.

These relationship tips will bring great benefits to your marriage.

Featured photo credit: Allen Taylor via unsplash.com

Reference

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