9 Pieces Of Advice For People Considering A Gap Year
Start writing a post

9 Pieces Of Advice For Anyone Who's Thinking Of Taking A Gap Year

I did a gap year this past year, and learned some important things along the way.

9 Pieces Of Advice For Anyone Who's Thinking Of Taking A Gap Year
Sarah Grace

If you're not feeling ready for college, it's OK — I wasn't either. Sometimes going straight from high school to college is stressful, and you want a break. A lot of people wonder about the benefits from a gap year or what you can do for a whole year. I am currently wrapping up my gap year, and here is what I learned that others considering it might want to be aware of before deciding.

1. Have a job

Chances are, most of your friends will be in school or not around, so getting a job will help fill up your time, as well as save money if you plan on going to college. I worked in the food industry as a waitress and in retail as a sales associate and found that both are good for making money if you have enough hours.

2. Make a plan

Have a schedule in place for what you want to do for the year — whether that be travel, work, hang out with friends, or study for school, make sure you have it planned. The more unorganized you are, there's a better chance that it will be harder to have fun.

3. Travel

Not everyone has the money to do this, but I highly suggest either going to a state you've never been to before or overseas to somewhere like France or Spain. If you speak a foreign language this gap year is a really good time to perfect it and become fluent, so traveling for a month or more is a great idea. There are lots of great programs that only do month-long language intensives, semester-long, or year-long depending on your budget.

4. Keep your studies up

Not going to school for a whole year sounds great right? Well, don't forget if you're attending college in the fall, that that requires even more study and focus than high school. Make sure to do math problems for ten minutes a day to keep your skills intact. Reading books is a great way to maintain your English reading and writing abilities.

5. Exercise regularly

With lots of free time suddenly on your hands, it's easy to let go of your body and do whatever you want. It's almost like the rumored freshman 15, except for a gap year. I've found that just trying to maintain a steady and balanced diet and going on 2-3 walks a day, as well as some cardio, is a great way to keep your body in shape for school.

6. Focus on new hobbies

Finding new things to do is a great way to make new friends as well. Just by going to the library, town pool, or pursuing a sport you never did in high school can help fill up your time. Maybe starting to learn tennis, or going to the weekly yoga class will become your new thing. I found that going to the classes for teens at the YMCA or your town gym is a great way to meet people your age.

7. Be open minded

This is perhaps one of the hardest things that anyone has to do in their life, but the more people you meet, whether it's through work, town concerts, or yoga classes will often want to do something with you. Being more open-minded and trying new things is a must for taking a gap year because so many opportunities will present themselves just by saying yes to a cup of coffee or a weekend bowling competition.

8. Spend more time with family

If you're taking your gap year at home and can't afford to travel, try to spend more time with your family since you'll be gone the whole upcoming year. Having a game night or starting a new show (I highly suggest "Stranger Things") is a great way to spend time with them, especially after a long day of work.

9. Self care

Leave some time to go get your nails done, or go have a cup of coffee, or do face masks. Having time to relax is really important and during school, there wasn't a whole lot of time to do it. Now is the time to try to take care of your skin and body better.

Taking a gap year is something I would suggest if you don't feel ready for college yet. It helped give me the time I needed to save money for school and get organized. Even though school is not a must during this year, being on your own and having so much free time is a lot of work. The list above are all things I wish I would've thought more about or done during my gap year because having so much free time wasn't always easy for me. If you're someone thinking of doing a gap year, I hope that this list not only got you excited but gave you some good advice that you can use towards your year. Good luck!

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

How Much Of A Coffee Snob You Are, Based On Where You Live

Your state may determine how picky you are about your coffee.


When it comes to coffee, everyone has different criteria for what goes into their "perfect cup." Some caffeine lovers, though, are extra particular when it comes to their beloved beverage. One survey found that the state you're from (or the one you live in now) may play a part in determining how much of a coffee snob you actually are.

LiveShopper Sassie, the company behind this Coffee Project survey, received input from 1,000 coffee drinkers via their mobile app, PrestoShopper, to ask various questions about their coffee drinking habits and preferences. In return, these survey respondents got money back for their coffee — something any user who downloads the app can do as well (yes, even you).

Keep Reading... Show less

Even though Domestic Violence Awareness Month is coming to an end, it is so important to remain alert and aware of exactly what domestic violence is, who can be affected by domestic violence (hint: everyone), how to get help if you need it, and even how to be the best support system possible if you know any survivors.

So, before you close out October, here's a brief run-through of what you need to know about domestic violence, whether you're going through it, survived it, or know someone who has.

Keep Reading... Show less

Where To Find The Best Coffee Drinks In America, According To A Survey

Here's the coffee shop where you should get your morning brew.


Coffee, for billions of people, is one of the only things that can get us out of bed (after hitting snooze a time or two), especially in 2020. Because, if we're being honest, is there anything that beats a quality cup of coffee on those mornings when all we wanted to do is roll over and go back to sleep? The answer is no. And if you're headed to a coffee shop to pick up your caffeinated beverage, you don't want to sleep on the best coffee drinks in America.

According to LiveShopper Sassie's Coffee Project survey, when it comes to chain coffee shops, there are definitely preferred spots you'll want to hit up for your go-to order — whether you order the classic, frozen, or flavored coffee, an espresso, tea, or other. To figure out the hot spots, 1,000 coffee drinkers across the United States took to LiveShopper's mobile app, PrestoShopper, to answer various questions about their coffee drinking habits and preferences. In return, these survey respondents got money back for their coffee — something any user who downloads the app can do as well (yes, even you).

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

9 Vulnerable Stories That Were Shared This World Mental Health Day

Everyone has a mental health experience. These creators bravely shared their stories with us.


Everyone has a mental health story. Whether it's a story that's shared publicly or privately, it's something that has the ability to make a big impact in someone's life. For many, these mental health stories are ongoing, ever-changing in how they play a part in an individual's life.

Odyssey believes in the community that can be formed when these stories are shared. As October 10 was World Mental Health Day, many of our creators took the opportunity to speak out about their personal struggles with mental illnesses.

Keep Reading... Show less
Content Inspiration

Survey: Which Issues Are The Most Important To You In The 2020 Election

If you're a first-time voter or voting by mail for the first time, we want to hear your story.


The general election on Tuesday, November 3, 2020, will decide not only the next president of the United States but also which political party controls the House of Representatives and the Senate. Young and first-time voters will play a crucial part in determining the result.

Keep Reading... Show less
Fox Atomic

Halloween is days away and that means that November is basically here, aka the holiday season. I love Halloween movies, preferably the ones that are more cute or funny than innately scary.

If October has been a crazy busy month for you, you may have forgotten to watch some of your favorite Halloween movies, but you still have time! This week I know I have been bingeing my favorites, and you need to add some of these to your list if you need to get in the last minute Halloween spooky spirit.

Keep Reading... Show less

Articles To Write If You're All About Saving More Money, And Waking Up A Little Bit Earlier

Get your day started right — and keep that budget tight.


For all the young professionals, parents, and students out there who've been working, learning, or even teaching remote — 2020 has likely been the longest year of your life. If you didn't know (sorry), we've been locked down for over 200 days now, and chances are, you are ready for it to be OVER.

Keep Reading... Show less

Don't get me wrong, we definitely saw some red flags from Clare in episodes one and two of this season of "The Bachelorette," but after (spoiler alert) Yosef got sent home last night, she's quickly become the villain of her own season, waving some pretty bright red flags we can no longer ignore.

To get more specific, last night Chris Harrison told the guys they'd all be getting dates after Clare canceled the cocktail party following the fight with Yosef (please let this be the last time I have to think about this a**hole). Unfortunately for the men, Clare also ended up completely ditching the first group date she promised them. Yes, that's right, she stood up the men who were supposed to have a fun day with her and showed up hours later without an apology (or a reason).

Keep Reading... Show less

Fall is most of our favorite seasons. We all have different reasons for that, but mine is for the food. I'll (with a fair amount of shame) have a hot soup any day of the year — even on the hottest summer days. But from the first sign of leaves changing, I embrace my love for hot chai, pumpkin-based baked goods, and my favorite Indian soups publicly with loved ones.

This year more than ever, even those who can barely make toast or cereal have been dusting off their cookbooks. We're not just making homemade pumpkin spice chai — we're eating fried chicken, homemade soups, and ordering TikTok viral drinks from Starbucks.

Keep Reading... Show less
@bacheloretteabc on Instagram / @viallnicholas28 on Twitter

"The Bachelorette" is FINALLY back, and season 16 is already off to a — dare I say it? — DRAMATIC start.

There is no fandom more involved and invested than Bachelor Nation, so naturally, viewers had A LOT of thoughts during last night's episode. And honestly, the only thing more entertaining than watching a new episode of "The Bachelor" is following the live tweets fans post while it airs.

Keep Reading... Show less

5 Disney Movies To Watch If You're In Need Of Some Childhood Nostalgia

Disney + is a huge part of my young adult life- since I am a sucker for re-watching shows and movies I was obsessed with throughout my childhood. Check out to see what Disney movies have taught me throughout my life.

Walt Disney Pictures

Disney movies will always hold a special place in my heart. They made my childhood important and taught me so many lifelong lessons at an early age while making it fun and enjoyable for me.

During quarantine, I have decided to re-watch some of my favorite childhood movies, and let me tell you, I do not regret a single minute of it. It reminded me how these movies instilled values and morals into not only my childhood but still in my life to this day.

Keep Reading... Show less

10 Best Songs From Bryson Tiller's 'Anniversary' And 'TRAPSOUL Deluxe' Albums

Five years since his debut album and I'm brought back to middle school.


To celebrate the five year anniversary of his debut album "TRAPSOUL" Tiller has released two new albums and these are my favorites from the release. The deluxe album includes songs that didn't make the cut from the debut album and the "Anniversary" album has brand new songs.

Keep Reading... Show less

Halloween is every costume-lover's favorite holiday. Growing up in Canada, I remember wearing turtlenecks and sweats under my princess costumes. The opportunity for it to be socially acceptable to dress up as anybody but yourself for just one night a year is one most of us love taking advantage of.

I was doing "couples" costumes with my girlfriends before I ever had a boyfriend. There was a year in high school in which my best friend and I dressed up as two of the Golden Girls and one year in which we went to Halloween parties dressed up as Iago and Jafar.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments