Ask Emma: How do I find alone time?

Emma suggests the libraries for some quiet studying, walks and drives for clearing head



Emma is here to give tips on how to find some alone time in the dorms

SAYDEE PHOTHIVONGSA, Evergreen news editor

Editor’s Note: Even though Emma Ledbetter has graduated, The Daily Evergreen has decided to continue the Ask Emma segment with a new author in honor of our friend Emma and all the people she has helped.

Dear Emma, 

It’s my first year at college and I am living in the dorms. For the most part, everything is going great. My roommate and I have become really close and we do almost everything together.

Even better, our floor has a lot of really cool people and we’ve all been hanging out a lot the past several weeks. I’m really happy that I’ve made so many new friends, but lately I’ve been feeling kind of drained. Our room has become the central hang out spot of our floor and there are always people in our room.

My roommate loves always having people in our room, but sometimes I wish we could have some peace and quiet.  It makes it hard to focus on school or have time to recharge. Besides my room, there aren’t really any other private spots on campus for me to go to. What should I do? 


Needing Alone Time 


Dear Needing Alone Time, 

I’m so happy to hear that dorm life is going well (for the most part)! It sounds like you have built yourself a nice community around you and that is very important your freshman year. However, I can totally understand the desire for alone time to recharge. 

The hard thing about living in the dorm (as you’ve pointed out) is that there aren’t many private spaces to be in besides your room, and most of the time that isn’t really private. 

An activity that can constitute alone time is taking a walk. Walks allow you to get out of your head  (and your dorm room) for a while and get some fresh air. Listening to music, a podcast or nothing at all could help you recharge your social battery. Not to mention the health benefits of walking, what a well-rounded activity! 

If you are lucky enough to have a car here, you could go for a drive (nighttime drives are my personal favorite). Drives can also be therapeutic and a good way to get away from the madness of your dorm room. Just you, the open road and some tunes. 

If you’re looking for some real quiet time, the Terrell or Holland libraries are a fantastic choice. Not only is it quiet, but it gives you a chance to be productive and maybe even get some homework done, which can sometimes help in the recharging process. 

The libraries also have study rooms you can book out, so if you don’t feel like being around the other people in the library, you can get yourself a room entirely dedicated to you for a few hours. They are open 24 hours a day, which is convenient for anytime you feel the need to get out of the dorm. 

The key to all of the activities listed above is that you need to be ALONE. Bringing your friends along defeats the purpose of doing them at all. I think the main idea I’m getting at here is to try to start doing some activities on your own throughout the day so that when you do come back to your dorm you will feel more welcoming of the social time you will get there. 

It might be worthwhile to have conversations with your roommate and friends as well. Let them know how you are feeling and lay down some boundaries if you have to. If your friends care about you and your well-being, and I have a feeling they do, they will understand your need for a little space. After all, it is your room too. 

As always, it’s easier said than done but I hope these tips help you find your way to some peace and a recharged social battery. Good luck!