Sophomore Slump is a phenomenon commonly experienced when expectations built up from freshman year are unmet. Whether the "slumps" are real depends on your personality type. Sophomore Slump is also often felt during sophomore year, +/- one semester.
Sophomore Slump is normal
Once you've been on a high, as many presumably have been during freshman year, it's natural for some people to feel a little "down" one they return to normal (see: post-coital dysphoria). In addition, some might find that Yale does not live up to their expectations in some ways: maybe, for instance, you harbored the not uncommon belief that once you entered these hallowed halls, you received a magic wand that conferred to you a Privileged People Status for the rest of eternity. It's okay to feel a little disappointed by mismatched expectations, or sad for no reason at all.
How to get over Sophomore Slump
What matters it not so much how you actually feel, but how you deal with those feelings. It's very important NOT TO GET STUCK. If you notice yourself feeling blue and unmotivated, step back for a second to regain the proper perspective. You're okay; you're at a great college; you're healthy. Recognize that Yale provides TONS and TONS of opportunities that you won't ever find anywhere else (for example: did you know that there are crazy fellowships that will fund doing something fun and out-of-the-ordinary? Go talk with a UCS Fellowship Advisor to find out). Your four years go by really quickly, and you really shouldn't let them pass you curled up in your room angsty/depressed/unhappy/etc. -- you can do that anywhere, at any time, for the rest of your life.
The point is: personality types differ; some are more prone to the blues than others; but don't get stuck there. It's important to note that though Yale offers all kinds of counseling and support services, no one is necessarily going to take an arbitrary interest in you and keep probing to make sure you're okay. If you put on a brave face for the public, many -- if not most -- are going to assume you're fine. And even if they don't assume that you're fine, many won't have time to nurse you back to normalcy. Be strong, be brave, keep calm, and carry on, and smile. Have the courage to enjoy your four years, even in spite of the rejections you will face. It's all to make you stronger! Plus, for every rejection you face, there will be an amazing opportunity that you DO receive.
- Your Dean - Deans are trained to deal with these things. Though your dean's primary responsibility is your academic well-being, he is also there to point you in the direction of help for other serious issues.
- Chaplain's Office
- Walden Peer Counseling
- Your own friends, parents, spiritual companions, etc.
- For serious cases of the blues: Yale Mental Health
There are people who can help - but it is really up to you to get help.