Freshman year of college is swiftly coming to a close and the stress of exam time is upon us all. Amidst the studying, packing, and stress, there's hardly enough time to truly reflect on what this year has given me. The experiences I've had this year have shaped who I am and have helped me grow a tremendous amount while also giving me a bit of a reality check.
Here are ten realizations that freshman year has given me:
1. There's never enough time.
Depending on your schedule, it may feel like the assignments keep piling up on your Canvas to-do list with no end in sight. Twenty four hours never feels like enough time to complete the mountain of tests, quizzes, projects, etc. in addition to finding time to get in three meals and some decent sleep.
2. Your diet either gets better or worse.
The notion of the "freshman fifteen" is well known. It can be difficult to maintain a healthy, balanced diet while getting from class to class but with the constant access to food, it can be a little easier to pick and choose the best options.
3. So does your sleeping schedule.
You're not going to get those assignments done in your sleep. Before you know it, it's 1 am and you're reflecting on your lack of proper time management.
4. You find your niche.
College is a great time to figure out the types of people you want around you on a daily basis. From organizations to campus events to study groups, there are many opportunities to meet people with the same interests and aspirations. You may realize that your high school friends are no longer a circle you wish to be a part of. For me personally, I choose people that motivate me to succeed during my time here, with a few laughs in between.
5. You gain some independence.
Freshman year can be a big adjustment, going from living at home with your family, willing to help with whatever to living on your own with a multitude of responsibilities and some freedom. What I've learned is that some are more equipped to handle this than others.
6. Your perspective changes drastically.
College has the ability to challenge your views and preconceived notions. Being open to the experiences that this year has brought me has allowed me to develop some previous concepts and alter others. Being open to a change in your thinking is the best approach.
7. High school taught you little to nothing about the real world.
I've found myself saying this time and time again. Personally, high school felt like its own little world. I learned a lot, don't get me wrong, but college is nothing like high school. And it's not supposed to be.
8. Professors are not all-knowing.
I think we all have felt the frustration of having a professor who is more unorganized than we are. But it's also an opportunity to realize that they're really no different from us; you can challenge them too.
9. Your chosen major may be affirmed or no longer something you want to pursue.
Many people decide to switch their majors during or right after freshman year. It's a good time to re-evaluate the path you want to take for the future and how much time and work you're willing to put into it.
10. It gets easier.
Everything gets easier with time. Routines develop, habits form, and soon enough you'll be graduating and looking back on how all of this was worth it!