It's Monday afternoon, 2 PM, and I have just woken up. It's a weird feeling, something I haven't experienced yet. What is it? An odd sense of calm...peace...ah, yes. It's not having to worry about another exam, or a project, or homework due tomorrow (or anytime soon, really). Glorious winter break, you're here at last!
I would like to take this space to give out one piece of advice--possibly my only one. It is to listen to your academic advisers. Despite what you think, they really do know what they're talking about. Where does this come from suddenly, you ask? It was my first thought once I woke up today. It happened because of that feeling I just described to you: it's one that I haven't had before only because I overstretched. I took about 20 credit hours (that's 7-8 classes) and let me tell you, that is a ridiculous amount. And what happens while you're constantly stressing out trying to make it through the day and to save your GPA? You miss out on life. You miss out on a college experience, whatever that means for you. You miss out on forming bonds with professors, meeting new people, making new friends, trying out new restaurants, going hiking/camping in the beautiful Lake Monroe or Yellowwood State Park. You also miss out on learning. While you're too busy getting that homework done or cramming for that exam, you miss out on that absorbing information thing people speak of, and gaining knowledge.
So, in short, don't do it. Take a normal workload. Join clubs you've never thought of joining before. Go out for a run--Bloomington can take your breath away with it's natural beauty. Go to a movie/documentary or a lecture in a department you've never had a class in. Eat some food you've never tried before. Talk to a professor over coffee, and ask him/her about their life. Make mistakes (not the one I did, hopefully), and learn from them. Go live. Experience all that you have to experience, because now's the time, if anything. These four years--they will be the best in your life. Live them. You will love it.