As your high school career comes to an end, you're probably using your summer to prepare for the first year of college that awaits you. Let me be the first to say your freshman year of college is the best, worst, most stressful, exciting, and overall weirdest time of your life, and looking up cliché pieces of advice isn't going to prepare you for what lies ahead. I'm here to debunk and re-bunk college advice, you've heard all of your life.
I don't care if you were the fittest and most athletic student in high school, the freshman 15 can happen to you...if you let it. With dining hall meal plans, food is easily accessible at almost any time in the day. And it's hard to find time to go to the gym between classes, clubs, and homework! As long as you take care of yourself, and don't always take advantage of dining hall buffets, you might just be able to get through your first year of college without the freshman 15 sneaking up on you.
Myth: you'll make tons of new friends Truth: not every new person you get to know is going to be your friend
Between your classes, clubs, dorm, hall, and roommate, you are going to meet SO MANY NEW PEOPLE! While embracing everyone and giving them a chance is a great way to make new friends, not everyone is going to stick around. Just like high school (well really all of your life), not everyone is going to be your friend. Some people you won't click with, agree with, or you'll simply just be annoyed by. Don't feel forced into new friendships, or feel forced to keep friendships, no matter how long you've been in them. While college is a perfect time to meet other people, it's also one of the best times to find yourself. So don't get wrapped up in pleasing or surrounding yourself by others so often that you forget about taking care of yourself.
Myth: "we love each other, of course, we'll stay in a relationship/friendship"Truth: keeping relationships/ friendships is A LOT of work
Sometimes love for someone isn't enough to keep you two together. When going to college, a relationship/friendship endures distance, hardships, jealousy, etc. I'm not saying that relationships/friendships can't work while college is in session, but between the distance and trying to balance relationships/friendships and schoolwork, it will take A LOT of hard work.
Myth: act professional around professors, they're your authority figuresTruth: professors are humans too
Although some professors will inevitably be big, mean, and scary, most are extremely approachable. Feel free to sit in front of the classroom. Go to office hours when you can. Ask questions even if you worry about looking stupid; it's better to know the answer. Professors are there to teach and provide help with your education. They expect their students to not know everything, ask questions, and seek help. Take advantage of their guidance.
Myth: you have to grow up and learn how to be completely independentTruth: it's not embarrassing to ask for help or to admit you can't do something
In some ways, yes you do need to grow, mature, and find an independent way of doing things, but you aren't being thrown into the deep end with no floaties. Most campuses offer TONS of helpful resources, whether it be therapy, tutoring, health-related sources, or literally ANYTHING else you may need. It's not embarrassing to admit defeat and that you need assistance. Plus, mom or dad is always a phone call away.
College is all about the "new," but know your limits. Say yes to new experiences. Say yes to new friends. Say yes when standing up for something you believe in. Say yes when necessary. But know that peer-pressure is still very much alive in college, maybe even more present than it was in high school. Say no to things you aren't comfortable with. Say no when you disagree Say no when a boy tells you "you're killing the mood." Learn the power behind "No."
"You're going to go on to do great things," is a popular quotation to hear during graduation. It's true. You will go on to do some absolutely great things...and then some times not so much. There will be days where you skip class just because you don't feel like going. There will be tests that you don't study for and fail. There will be times that you feel absolute shame for your decisions. But all of those are okay to do (in moderation of course) and you're still a great person even if you sometimes do some not-so-great things.