I Am A Better Person Because Of What I Learned At 18

I Am A Better Person Because Of What I Learned At 18

...That I am grateful to know today.
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For many of us, eighteen is our first real taste of adulthood.

You're away at college, doing things on your own, with minimal supervision. Sounds like the dream, right? Think again, because it's a year of challenges, triumphs, and lessons -- some that could be learned the rather hard way.

With that being said, here are 18 things that I wish I had already known, that I'd like to instill in others.

1. Quality over quantity -- always. No questions asked.

2. You are not invincible...

3. ...but you are also much stronger than you think.

4. People are not always going to agree with what you do, think, or say, and that's OK.

5. He's just a stupid boy. A year from now, you'll laugh at how much time you wasted over him.

6. Stop caring so much about what people think. Seriously.

7. It's OK to have feelings, no matter how much you want to defy them.

8. Putting yourself out there is nerve-wracking, but it will pay off in the end.

9. Nothing happens overnight. Be patient.

10. If you're being someone you know you are not, stop it.

11. Friends come and go, but do not let go of those who stay.

12. Be proud of your passions, ambitions, and dreams.

13. Taking risks isn't always a bad idea.

14. There is more to life than how many 'likes' people toss you on social media. Really.

15. Go with your first instinct, always.

16. There is nothing a cup of coffee or a nap cannot cure.

17. It will get better, I promise.

18. Take care of yourself. Life is so, so precious.

Cover Image Credit: Instagram//Patagonia

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To All Incoming Freshmen, When You Get To College, Please Don't Be THAT Freshman

I am pretty sure we all know who I'm talking about.

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As we are all counting down the days to return to campus, students are looking forward to meeting new people and reuniting with old friends. And then, there is the freshman.

We have all been there. The eagerness and excitement have been slowly building up through months of summer vacation, all waiting for this moment. I understand the anxiousness, enthusiasm, and insecurities. The opportunity to meet new people and explore a new area is very intriguing. But let's be real, you are here to make memories and get an education. So here are a few pieces of advice from a former college freshman.

1. Don't be that freshman who follows their significant other to college

This is the boy or girl who simply can not think for themselves. The 17-year-old puts their own personal goals and interests aside to sacrifice for a six-month high school relationship. This will more than likely end at an end of semester transfer after the relationship has been tested for a month or two in college life. So if you want to really enjoy your freshman year, make your own decisions and do what is best for you.

2. Don't be that freshman who lets their parents pick their major

"You are not going to school just to waste my money."

This is a statement you might have heard from your parents. As true as it might seem, this is definitely not a good way to start your college years. If you are not majoring in something you can see yourself doing, you are wasting your time. You can major in biology, go to medical school, and make the best grades. But if deep down you don't want to be a doctor, you will NOT end up being a good doctor. When it comes to picking your major, you really have to follow your heart.

3. Don't be that freshman who gets overwhelmed with the first taste of freedom

Yes. It is all very exciting. You don't have a curfew, you don't have rules, you don't have anyone constantly nagging you, but let's not get carried away. Don't be the freshman who gets a tattoo on the first night of living on your own. Don't be the freshman who tries to drink every liquor behind the bar. Don't be the freshman who gets caught up being someone that they aren't. My best advice would be to take things slow.

4. Don't be that freshman who starts school isolated in a relationship

I'm not telling you not to date anyone during your freshman year. I am saying to not cut yourself off from the rest of the world while you date someone. Your first year on campus is such an amazing opportunity to meet people, but people are constantly eager to start dating someone and then only spend time with that person.

Be the freshman who can manage time between friends and relationships.

5. Don't be that freshman who can't handle things on their own

It is your first year on your own. Yes, you still need help from your parents. But at this point, they should not be ordering your textbooks or buying your parking pass. If you need something for a club or for class, YOU should handle it. If you're having roommate problems, YOU should handle it, not your parents. This is the real world and college is a great time for you to start building up to be the person you want to be in the future, but you can't successfully do that if your parents still deal with every minor inconvenience for you.

6. Don't be that freshman who only talks to their high school friends

I know your high school was probably amazing, and you probably had the coolest people go there. However, I believe that college is a great time to be on your own and experience new things. Meeting new people and going to new places will allow you to grow into a more mature person. There is a way to balance meeting new friends and maintaining friendships with childhood friends, and I am sure you will find that balance.

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To The Girl Who She Thought She Was Ready For Something But Isn't

Sometimes things don't work the way you want them or do they?

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There could be a multiple of things that you thought you were ready for. It could be that first trip that you planned on going alone, a higher job position, a new relationship. Just know that when you take that first step, you technically are ready for this new transition. It's a matter of running the whole journey with it. Its okay to give up if there is no other option, but don't give up so easily when things get rough. Whatever situation that you are going through, there is always someone to help guide you through it. Just know that you don't have to make that journey alone. I am in a new part of my life and my journey wasn't easy but I know that I can't fight what the universe wants.

Its okay if you're unsure of yourself but there are parts of the universe that wanted you to take that first step. Whether it's a manager or a friend that believed in you to give you the opportunity or the idea. If you start to feel like that this journey wasn't a good idea, you should assess yourself and see if this is what you want. If the answer is yes, then pursue it with all of the power that you have. I've noticed when something new is in my life isn't working out how I thought, it's normally how those surrounding me react to it or if I start to negatively self-talk myself to go back into my comfort zone. You can't stay in your comfort zone forever and not rise or fall. We are all scared of the fall, but you haven't lived if you haven't taken that leap and ended up fine on the other side.

There are multiple ways to hype you up for this next stage in your life. You can combat the negative self-talk with positive stating that you can do this. If you find that you aren't getting anywhere, go on another project that will bring you success so that you can come back to this one with a clear head. If you are going into a new role at work, watch videos of other leaders that can inspire you to combat through their journeys. There are multiple ways to make sure that you succeed, but it all comes down to you because you are the one willing or unwilling to make the journey. If you don't have your full heart in this then what's the point?

All of this comes down to if you are willing to believe in yourself or not. I say if you weren't willing to make this leap yourself with a full heart then you need to reevaluate yourself. I am going through a new journey in my life right now and it tests something that I'm not good at naturally. I normally go about things that I'm naturally good at, but it's time for me to fly rather than walk. If you are struggling with something new in your life, don't let it ride but surf the tide. You got this!

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