It's not unusual for students to feel like they need a change of environment, and to think about taking time away from the "orange bubble." While this could mean taking a leave of absence from school, more often students choose other ways to re-charge and re-focus while remaining enrolled. For example, many students choose to study abroad for a semester or year. Others take summers to travel, gain work experience, or immerse themselves in other cultures. These shorter-term options can provide a welcome break from the pressures of Princeton. Your director of student life is a great resource in these decisions: they are happy to talk with you about how to thrive at Princeton.
Each year about 125 students take time off from Princeton. Many of those leaves are health-related, but other students are motivated by a desire to travel, get work or volunteer experience, re-evaluate academic and professional paths, and/or the need to be with family. While on leave students can, with pre-approval, take U.S. and/or international course transfer credit.
If you are thinking of pursuing a job or internship while on leave, the Center for Career Development can provide excellent advice about possible career advancement and potential opportunities during your time away from Princeton.