If you don’t already know, I’m a current senior at the University of Minnesota studying strategic communications (it’s honestly just a fancy way to say that I study public relations and advertising). College is a wonderful time in life to discover who you are, what you like, and what your goals are. Throughout the past few years at this university, I’ve learned so many valuable lessons that I’ll carry with me for the rest of my life. So even though nobody asked for it, here are the 10 life lessons that I’ve learned in college (in no particular order). This post is dedicated to those of you who have yet to enter college or still have a few years before graduation.
- The people you thought would be in your life forever may leave to teach you lessons that you couldn’t have learned if they had stayed. Some things were meant to happen, just not meant to be.
- You DO NOT need to have your entire life figured out by the time you’re 20. In fact, you most likely won’t. Everyone has their own timeline of when and how to do things. So stop trying to put yourself on a strict timeline that’s filled with unrealistic expectations.
- It’s OK to change– it simply means you’ve leveled up. As people, we are constantly changing and growing into the most authentic versions of ourselves. If people don’t want you to change or view your growth negatively, that just simply means you’ve outgrown them (also refer to lesson #1).
- Be grateful for your failures. You never know, you might’ve dodged an unforeseen bullet. Better things are waiting and when you eventually succeed, you’ll appreciate it even more because you’ve had a taste of failure.
- Work smarter AND harder. Be smart about the things that you do and be efficient, but also put your hard work into it. An employer once told me that it’s the extra 10% in 110% that gets people further in life (and hired).
- You don’t always need to hustle hustle hustle and go go go. Rest, reflection and recovery are essential components of a successful and happy life. Once in a while, take a step back, take some rest, reflect on your life, and recover from all the stress and trauma you’ve endured.
- Be picky with the people you surround yourself with. Anyone can be an acquaintance but true friends are hard to find. Get around people who love to talk about visions, ideas, and have uplifting thoughts. Steer clear of those who talk negatively of other people. It’s better to have a small group of solid friends than to befriend everyone and fall miserably with nobody on the other side to catch you.
- Even if you’re in a relationship, you are still two independent people. You are growing in one pot, and your partner is growing in another pot. But through watering each other, giving each other sunlight, and feeding each other nutrients, you’ll foster a healthy relationship and grow side by side.
- You only have a certain amount of energy, so be disciplined with what you respond and react to. Not everything deserves your time and attention. Preserve that energy for the things and people that actually matter to you.
- Honestly, nobody really cares. So why do you? Wear what you want, do what makes you happy, eat the way you want to eat, post what you want to post on social media. If people judge you, that’s merely a projection of their own insecurities onto you– and that’s just not your problem. Live unapologetically– you only have one life.
That’s it for this post, friends. As always, thanks for reading!
What lessons have you learned in life? Let me know in the comments below or by sending me an email. I would love to hear about your personal experiences.