Freshman year mistakes I made

Freshman Year Mistakes I Made In A Nutshell

After one year of college in my belt, I reflect on what I should have done as a freshman at DePaul University.

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Well, I finally get to say that I finished up my freshman year of college and I survived. College is starting up in a few weeks, and I took the time to reflect on my freshman year. I asked myself, what went well? What went bad? My first year of college, for the most part, was successful. I managed to make some friends, have fun, learn, and be a leader. However, there are some things that I regret about my freshman year. Here are just a few of these mistakes:

1. Not exposing myself to new ideas and clubs

This piece of advice may be one of the most repeated ones everyone hears about. As a witness who finished one year of college, I can tell you that it's true. College is the time to explore new ideas and find out who you are, and as a freshman, I was highly involved. Yet, I did not expose myself to new clubs. In high school, I played the saxophone in the band, was involved in ambassador club, track, cross-country, and I was an editor for the high school newspaper. I did similar activities during my freshman year at DePaul. To start off, I contributed to the campus newspaper the DePaulia. Although I was not on the track or cross-country team, I still ran in my free time and signed up for races. I participated in residence hall council, similar to the ambassador club which was a student council organization. Although I was involved, maybe I could have mixed things up. I could have been in a fraternity or tried the art club.

2. Not being involved with college athletics

Attending a football, and a basketball game is a staple at all colleges to show school spirit and pride. It's a way to create memories, cheer for your school, and make new friends. As a freshman, I did not attend many athletic events. Although DePaul isn't known to be a school that is big on athletics, I feel guilty for not attending as many sporting events. I only attended a few basketball games here and there and that was it. My advice I have is to not make any excuses and just go to the games, even if you don't have anyone to go with! The excuses I make is that traveling to Wintrust Arena for a men's basketball game is too far from DePaul, or that I will have nobody to go with.

3. Not practicing my saxophone

As I mentioned earlier, I played the saxophone in high school. I brought my saxophone to my dorm my freshman year, and I slowly forgot about it as the saxophone case began to collect dust in the back of my closet. I always enjoyed practicing and performing, and I did not practice as much as I wanted to. The last week of my freshman year, I picked it up again and began practicing, and I was no longer performing as good as I was in high school. The main moral of this story is don't forget about the special talents you have and your passions. Even though you are developing new passions, it doesn't mean you have to forget about the older ones that helped you become a better person.

4. Not joining Odyssey

Yes, I regret not writing in this publication for my freshman year. As a journalism student, I need the most practice I can get to improve my writing. Although I wrote for the campus newspaper, I should've exposed myself to other activities and learned to step out of my comfort zone. Odyssey is just one of the many activities that can help me with my writing.

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I'm Not The Person I Was In High School And I'm Not Sorry I Changed

I'm sorry, the old me can't come to the phone right now.

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If those who knew me in high school hung out with me now, they probably wouldn't recognize me. If my friends from college hung out with me around two years ago, they probably wouldn't recognize me. It's safe to say I've changed... a lot. I definitely find the change to be for the better and I couldn't be happier with the person I've become.

In high school, I would sit at home every night anxiously waiting to leave and go out. Now, honestly, going out is the last thing I want to do any night of the week. While everyone in college is at a fraternity party or at the bars, I prefer to sit at home on the couch, watching Netflix with my boyfriend. That's an ideal night for me and it is exactly the opposite of what I wanted to do a couple of years ago. There's nothing wrong with going out and partying, it's just not what I want to do anymore.

I craved attention in high school. I went to the parties and outings so I could be in Snapchats and photos, just so people would know I was there. I hung out with certain groups of people just so I could say I was "friends" with so-and-so who was so very popular. I wanted to be known and I wanted to be cool.

Now, I couldn't care less. I go to the bars or the parties if I really feel like it or if my friends make me feel bad enough for never going anywhere that I finally decide to show up. It's just not my scene anymore and I no longer worry about missing out.

If you could look back at me during my junior year of high school, you probably would've found me searching for the best-ranked party schools and colleges with the best nearby clubs or bars. Now, you can find me eating snacks on the couch on a Friday night watching the parties through other peoples' Snapchats.

Some may say that I'm boring now, and while I agree that my life is a little less adventurous now than it was in high school, I don't regret the lifestyle changes I've made. I feel happier, I feel like a better person, I feel much more complete. I'm not sorry that I've changed since high school and I'm not sorry that I'm not living the typical "college lifestyle." I don't see anything wrong with that life, it's just not what makes me happy and it's not what I want to do anymore.

I've become a different person since high school and I couldn't be happier about it. I have a lot that's contributed to the change, but my boyfriend definitely was the main factor as he showed me that staying in can be a million times better than a night out. My interests and my social cravings have completely transitioned into that of an 80-year-old grandma, but I don't regret it.

Change doesn't have to be a bad thing. In fact, it can bring a lot more happiness and comfort. The transition from high school to college is drastic, but you can also use it as an opportunity to transition from one lifestyle to another. I don't regret the lifestyle flip I made and I couldn't be less apologetic about it.

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College Made Me Feel Like I Can't Have Free Time

Every second that I do have free, I feel like I need to be working on some type of homework.

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There's no doubt that college is taxing on most student's mental health. You get to the point where you feel stressed about even breathing. I have hit the point where I feel like I'm permanently affected by the stress that I've dealt with this semester.

I used to have so much free time. Even in my other semesters, I had time to hang out with my friends, work, and even be lazy when I wanted to be.

I was still a good student, I got all my assignments done on time and I worked hard on them, but I never really had an overwhelming workload.

That is, until this semester. I got to a point where work was overwhelming, I was working longer hours than I was used to, and having to spend every second that I wasn't in class or at work doing homework, whether it was just lengthy math problems or writing multiple essays or scripts.

After months of being in this habit, when my workload from both work and school died down and I actually had free time, I didn't know what to do with myself.

When my friends were busy and I just wanted a relaxing day at home, since I felt like I deserved it, I would try to just lay down and rest, either reading a good book or catching up on all the shows that my stress had caused me to miss.

But there was always a voice in the back of my head reminding me of every upcoming assignment. I would start thinking about the essay due the next week, or a test that I could be studying for ahead of time.

That voice kept telling me I was being unproductive and wasting my time if I wasn't getting ahead on school work when I finally had the time.

And so I'm still in a position, at the end of the semester, where I feel like I'm wasting my time every time I lay down and just want to take a nap because I'm exhausted from running between work and school. I'm trying to fight myself and tell myself that I am allowed to be lazy for at least a little bit, and I don't need to be constantly working.

Hopefully, that voice wins over, especially with summer coming up. With all of the free time, I'll have since I won't have to stress about school, hopefully, I'll be able to better balance my busy days with my lazy days.

I know this is probably an issue for many college students who are overwhelmed with everything that they have to do. Hopefully, summer break is a nice break for all of us and it gives us the chance to get the free time that we all deserve for surviving this semester, and the school year overall.

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