College is different from high school in a number of ways… more independence, more work, and more responsibilities. One of the most relieving differences I’ve found between the two is that in college, no one cares if you’re “cool.” Being unashamedly weird and goofy is one of the best ways to make friends (shout-out K∆ and shout-out Orientation Staff). I’ve found that putting yourself out there and never apologizing for your truest self are qualities that are valued much higher than having the most male/female admirers or being the drunkest one at the party.
I’ve seen so many guys and girls alike come into college thinking that they need to do everything they can to impress the people around them. They need to act like they’re too cool for anything that could be considered the slightest bit lame. They would never be caught going to the library when they could be going out or, Heaven forbid, having fun at a school-sponsored event.
I would like to formally give a news flash to anyone who has this mindset. The truth is, you’re doing it wrong. College is an incredible time to embrace the freedom that is given to you to be yourself. It is a time to find people who love you for you and not some knock-off version of you. It’s a time to speak up in class, to dance no matter how uncoordinated you are, to branch out, to take risks, and to be unabashedly passionate about whatever it is that intrigues and excites you.
If someone has a problem with who you really are, screw ‘em. You need people who will build you up, support you, and encourage you to do more not less. The sort of negativity that comes from someone so caught up in self-image and self-righteousness is not something you need in your life.
I won’t deny the fact that it is scary to put yourself out there. To admit to yourself that “hey, I’m smart (or funny or good at singing or *insert whatever quality here*),” is a frightening thing, and it’s even harder to admit that to other people. However, I think you might find that when you’re really open about the good and the not so good parts of yourself, the relationships that you form are so much deeper and stronger.
So this is me telling you that it’s okay to “do the most.” People will appreciate you much more if you get excited about the lame or boring stuff rather than acting like you’re above it. So run for that position, join that club, sing that song at karaoke night, raise your hand if you know the answer. Do whatever it is that you want to do but you’re worried what people might think. Carry yourself with confidence, knowing that the real you is the best you. Remove the mindset that you’re “too cool” for that because, in reality, you’re not. You are not better than anyone and you are not less than anyone. You are you, and that is enough.