The time has finally come... That's right, the end of the semester. All things living are now dead whether it be from the winter air, or from finals. I just "wrapped" up my first semester as a college freshman. Now normally, the end of a semester wasn't a big deal in high school, in fact it was welcomed. However, as I sit on my bed at 2:50 a.m. this lovely Friday morning (because what is a sleep schedule, right?) I reflect back to the things I learned as I transitioned from high school to college:
1. College is HARD!
Coming to college I knew I would face new challenges like meeting a good group of friends and understanding the pressures of balancing a social life and school life. But I did not expect it to be so hard. Now I know "hard" is a very vague statement and does not describe how to take on the challenges but simply put: it just is.
For me, the hardest part was time management. Not placing enough time and energy on certain tasks to produce my best work. What have I found to help? Having a strong support system to make sure I'm swimming instead of sinking, and if I happen to be sinking they throw me a life-vest.
2. It's okay to ask for help!
I am still working on this piece of advice. Yay, you're at college you have your freedom, you are a newfound adult basking in the glory of your dorm and other "new" adult friends. You can do anything by yourself, but that does not always mean it should be done by ourselves.
Allowing someone to help you understand the ever-changing path in college is so important. Having someone to "lighten the load" or even just empathize with can not only be reassuring but calming.
3. It's okay to fail forward!
I am not perfect. I will say it one more time just to be clear: I am NOT perfect. As much as I like to think that I have my life all together, I don't. In high school I had to have everything correct. I could not mess up. I could not fail gracefully knowing I would learn from my choices.
Like I stated above, college is hard and classes are hard. Not making an A is not the best in my mind but it is OKAY! I have to be able to learn that failure is not our first option, but when it happens it's meant to teach me something about myself or the situation at hand.
4. Find your encouragement!
I was blessed to be able to grow up in a loving Christ-centered home. My parents would always say, cling to The Lord whether it be in trial or tribulation. I have never found this to be more true.
It's my first semester being away from home, in a new environment, and trying to figure out where I fit in. I am encouraged every day by God's word and his constant outpour of grace. I find a deep sense of comfort knowing that Jesus holds my entire life directly in his hands. No matter how many times I stress, fret, or fail He is right there to perfectly love the imperfect mess that is me.
5. Lastly, find a group & have some fun!
Having a group of people that make you laugh in the midst of all the craziness is so important! These will be the people you will share a bowl of queso with after a long week. Y'all will text each other in class with jokes about the lecture when you should be taking notes.
Most importantly, these are the people you will begin to celebrate your new milestones with. Y'all will share the good and the bad and dust the West Texas dirt off each other when you fall.
All in all, college is hard and I have not found the secret sauce that makes it all work yet, but I'm still looking. So until I figure that out, have a great week and have a happy holiday szn!