We live in a world that focuses so heavily on what others think about us. Are we wearing the right clothes? Did we say the right thing? Why do we care so much about what others think about us rather than think about what we want for ourselves?
I noticed during my transition into college a few years ago that I cared too much about how to present myself to others: look cute, say what the people want to hear, and go with it. This was not the way to go. I was not accurately representing myself to those that I considered friends at the time. I morphed myself into the person that I thought I was supposed to be.
Within a few months time, all of that went crashing down. People who I thought were close to me left me in the dust, and I felt that I had no one at school to trust or to care about me. I lost who I was simply in order to 'fit in'.
Besides the lack of friends and the immense homesickness, anxiety came crashing down. Days became harder and harder. I lost control of who I was. I let others and anxiety drown me.
Within a short time, I found myself better friends and went through the journey of different friend groups, as most college students experience. Luckily by the end of second semester, I had a pretty great group of friends. But despite this, I was still weighed down by anxiety. I ended up having to attend counseling and see a medical doctor in order to pick myself back up from rock bottom - all because of how my first semester came crashing down.
If I could go back and do it again, I would have chosen to stay more true to myself from the beginning. So what if I am a quiet gal? At least I will find people that love and accept me for who I am. Who cares if I don't have the cutest hair and clothes on my residence hall floor? At least the friends I make will be my friend for who I am on the inside rather than just the outside.
So, future Freshmen, please take my advice. You do you. Don't worry about other people's opinions about you and learn how to stay true to yourself. You don't need to change yourself in order to fit in with the crowd. You'll find your group of friends with time. Just remember, staying true to yourself will mean longer lasting, truer friendships and a happier you!
After all, who doesn't want to be happy?