How To Handle Change When You Move Off To College
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How To Embrace Change When Going Off To College

Take it from the girl who was in your shoes less than a year ago.

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How To Embrace Change When Going Off To College
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With summer coming to an end, along come the feelings of dread from move-in day quickly approaching. You might be thinking, "Why am I suddenly feeling so sad about leaving when I couldn't wait for this day to come nine months ago?" The answer to that is, being on your own is a lot less scary in theory, but when the time comes, all the reasonable concerns of moving out and being independent come onto you at once.

Your undying anticipation is replaced with anxiety and fear of the unknown. What kept going through my mind at this time last year was, "Did I spend enough time with my friends and family," "How am I going to survive without seeing my pets every day," and "Am I really prepared to live on my own?" Truth is, you're never really prepared, you learn along the way. These are some tips that will hopefully make the thought of move-in day a little easier on your mind.

Recognize that change is inevitable.

Everything must come to an end eventually. First it was elementary school, then middle school, and now high school. This may seem like a much bigger step compared to all the changes your life has seen up to this point, but it's just one small step into the rest of your life. Know that if you never take this step, you can never live the elaborate, exciting life that you want, you'll only ever have the life you currently have. And while that may seem like the safest option, nothing great ever came from the comfort zone, right?

Focus on the future instead of the past.

Missing your high school days is all good until it's not. It becomes detrimental to your positive mentality when you miss those days so much that you can't focus on the huge adventure you're about to go on. Think about what's coming next. Move-in day, first day of school, etc. Don't stress about little things such as making friends, that'll come easy. Keep your mind on the future and think of it as exciting instead of scary, and it'll all be greater than you could ever expect.

Replace the negative thoughts with positive ones.

It's easier to anticipate an event if you think about the good instead of the bad, replacing the negative thoughts with positive ones. Thoughts such as, "I'll be living alone," "I'll have to make all new friends," and "I'm gonna be so homesick," can be replaced by "I'll finally get to be independent," "I get to meet tons of new people who are going through the same situation as me," and "It'll make reuniting with my family so much sweeter."

Call your parents.

Your first few nights away from home are going to be the loneliest, but don't think it's too early to call home. Your parents have gone through situations like this multiple times, with themselves or with older siblings. They know how to empathize with you and can comfort you like no one else can. Just hearing their voices reassuring you that nothing has changed back at home can help you feel not so lonely.

Talk to people in your situation currently or people who were in your shoes not too long ago.

Before moving, you might find it comforting to talk to people who were just in your situation a year ago. They can offer advice of what to do when you get there to make it seem less daunting, and different ways to prepare for the big change. It may also help to make friends with other incoming freshmen to talk about your biggest fears with someone who is going through the exact same situation. It'll definitely help you to feel like you're not going through this alone, because the truth is, you're not.

Make your space homey.

Bring your old stuffed animal or your favorite blanket from home with you to college. It helps to have something that makes you feel like you're still at home, even for a little bit. Having soft lights such as lamps and fairy lights might also help to make your dorm more comfortable than being constantly basked in harsh fluorescent lights.

Make peace with anything that's holding you back.

That ex that you can't get your mind off of, that old friend that did you wrong, that teacher that almost kept you from graduating, understand that these things aren't following you to college. This is the best time to release pent-up feelings to really start fresh. If that involves talking with them and addressing these problems face to face, or blocking their number and forgetting about them completely, do whatever you need to do to keep them from holding you back in this new journey you'll be going on in a few short weeks.

This process is going to seem so life-changing, but it's only a stepping stone into the rest of your independent life of having a job, your own apartment, and only visiting your parents on the holidays. This is an intermediate made to prepare you for those days. You'll still see your family on weekends and holidays, and you can still spend the next few summers in your hometown. Your life won't be completely changed by going to college, but there is a lot to adjust to. Keep in mind that you will get used to it, it just takes some time. But when you're used to it, you'll wonder why you ever felt anxious about this adjustment.

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