1. There is no more of this effortless, “I won’t try but I’ll still get an A” nonsense.
If you graduated high school effortlessly while still managing to get A’s and you can get away with doing the same thing in college and in at work, then I need to meet you. Even in core classes, for the most part, you need to try and put some sort of effort towards getting an A in college — and your work ethic in college is nothing compared to how your work ethic needs to be in a job.
2. You can’t eat whatever you want and expect to feel good.
There were far too many freshman year, 1 a.m. 7eleven runs where we splurged on taquitos, chips, sour candy, and Arizona. Sounds good and tastes even better. However, this all catches up with you eventually. And unless you treat working out like a class, it’s very likely that all this will catch up to your ass.
You will not be a functioning human being of society if you don’t get enough of it. I cannot stress this point enough, but it is so so crucial to get at least 6 hours of sleep a night. There are all-nighters that I pulled and that I continue to pull, and every time, I really regret it. No amount of caffeine or make up can compensate for the hours of sleep you have so obviously lost.
4. There are friends you will meet who will literally just be your “freshman year” friends and then there are forever friends.
I know it’s really nice to think that the people you meet in your freshman dorm will be your friends for the rest of forever, but this is not exactly realistic. You’ll learn to weed out those friends that were there just to “party” and get drunk with. You realize who is really there for you and who was just there to make the moment more memorable. I am a firm believer of people being put into our lives for a certain purpose, but some are just there to help you get through a certain phase or moment. However, when you meet the friends that you want to be smiling at when you walk down the aisle, it’s a really incredible feeling. It’s almost scary because even though you just built these friendships in college, at this point in your life, you can’t imagine what your life would be without them.
5. Your parents are not the worst human beings ever anymore.
We spend a majority of a young adulthood loathing every decision and action our parents have made for us. I personally have always been best friends with my mom, but I only really started to appreciate her when I got to college. I think it’s important to realize that your parents are not out to get you and when they say, “we’re just looking out for your best interest,” they mean it. Give them a call and even though it’s awkward for some to just say “I love you” or “Thank you” out of nowhere, use an appreciative tone, laugh a little bit extra at their corny jokes, it makes a world of a difference.
6. Spreading yourself too thin will honestly get the best of you.
The 18 year old, ambitious Freshman thinks he or she is invincible and can join every organization, hold a job, go to class, exercise, have time to write papers every other night, and somehow maintain a social life. Well, I don’t know about every 18-year-old, but that sure as hell was my mentality. When you start college, you realize that time management is your best friend. If you are not one of those people who can balance a lot of different things simultaneously, then don’t! Join one or two organizations that you have a strong passion for. Get a job as a school desk receptionist or librarian, so you can do homework during down time. Be realistic about the amount of times you want to work out in a week. And please don’t procrastinate on your papers. If you want to stay in on a Friday night, STAY THE HELL IN! Never feel pressured to go out or drink just because you think that’s what you’re supposed to do. In short, be smart about your life and how much room you have in it for everything and everyone.
7. There is more to life than partying and drinking.
Some of the most remarkable people I’ve met do not drink nor do they party often. There are more important things in life than testing how many shots you can do in 15 minutes without puking. When you’re in high school, the idea of being a grown up is literally insane. It’s a place with no parents, no rules, and basically no guidelines whatsoever. However, adulthood is what you make of it. You could spend every other weekend seeing different things or trying new adventures with people you enjoy being with and still feel fulfilled because you got that “experience.” Every year you live is a year that you will not get to do over, so make the most of it by doing what YOU want to do.
8. It’s okay to not know who your “soulmate” is right now.
Trust me, it is not the end of the world if you haven’t found “The One” just yet. When you think about it, there’s still so much living left to do. Yeah, yeah, we all want to fall in love and find that special someone while we’re here, but why? Why do we feel inclined to find that special someone when there are so many people around us already that we consider “special?” Trust me, I know it’s a different concept entirely distinguishing between friends and a significant other, but what is the rush is what I am trying to say. You have so much to live for already and this is the time if any, to be adventurous and exciting. Of course, if you have already found that person, then you both can be adventurous together, but if you have not, just relax because it will happen for you. Maybe not tomorrow or next week, or even two years from now, but it will happen if that’s what you want.
9. It’s important to laugh at yourself once in a while.
A lot of us think that if we don’t take ourselves seriously, then no one will? WRONG. Life is not about being serious all the time. It’s more about living in the moment but being smart about how you’re doing it. Be mindful of your actions, but don’t ever limit yourself because you think you need to behave in a certain way all the time. Now I’m not saying you should crack jokes all through lecture or go to a job interview wasted, but you truly do need to take a step back once in while and just live. Laugh at the embarrassing things you do in front of people you love. Laugh at the horrible belting of songs you do with your best friends after a long night of studying. Laugh at the fact that “you will never be younger than you are at this very moment.”