Beginning college last year, a lot of my friends from high school and relatives about to go off to college have asked me what I loved about my first "year away from home." But in reality, I didn't have an answer. All because my first year as that little freshman girl with a backpack of school supplies and a baggy school pride sweater was not really what I wanted from the experience. I distanced myself from everything besides classes, ultimately making the year drag on. But now, as a sophomore, I'm absolutely ready to take this new school year head-on, avoiding these top 10 mistakes I made my first year.
1. Holding off talking to my roommate until move-in day
I didn't even try to figure out how to get in touch with this stranger I was now supposed to live with for the next year and ended up bringing every item that was on the school "recommended" list. Little did I know, my roommate had also done the same thing, and it took us about a week to figure out how to fit everything we owned into the small dorm room.
2. Not introducing myself to the rest of my floor or RA
Last year my floor was filled with brand new freshmen girls. Most were very quiet and kept to themselves, which only encouraged my shyness and led to never speaking to anyone. You should always try to get to know most of the people on your floor. You never know who you're going to meet and who could be your next best friend.
3. Not joining any clubs/sports teams/extracurriculars
Joining clubs or any sort of group that is outside of your normal class schedule can be a great stress-reliever. Trust me, you don't want to be sitting in your dorm after hours of studying and not have anything left to do except continue to sit there. Joining any sort of activity during your year away at school will help the transition go more smoothly, help you meet new people, and feel a little happier at the end of the day.
4. Making time for myself
Everyone needs a break from the world once in a while. Just remember that there is nothing wrong with setting down the books and watching your favorite movie or doing an arts and craft project. Whatever helps you relax at the end of a long and stressful week, always remember to make time for it when it's desperately needed.
5. Not managing my time effectively
She's begging you to call her. If she's not already blowing up your phone, she's learned to control herself as she waits patiently for you to make the first move. Even if it's just a text explaining what you did that week or a Skype call scheduled once a week, check in with her instead of only calling when you need something.
6. Going home almost every weekend
Going home every weekend keeps you from getting involved on campus, and as stated above, getting involved is something that helps the transition into college go a lot smoother.
7. Eating a bunch of junk food
Without Mom or Dad telling you how many cups of water to drink or which fruits and vegetables to eat on the daily, your body almost shuts down. You feel weak and tired all the time, and you're much more vulnerable to getting sick. Even if you're not a fan of the healthy living, remember to drink water daily and fit those fruits and vegetables in at least during every meal.
8. Not acting like my true self
Going to college can always be a scary transition, but it's also a time where you can discover yourself in many different ways. No matter where you're going or what you're studying, remember to always be true to yourself and make every day a memorable one.