Thought Catalog

College Is The Perfect Time To Be Uncertain

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Davide Cantelli

Your first term in college starts, you start finding friends in your block, and before you know it, you’re uncertain whether the major the you picked was something you were passionate about, or whether going out to drink after the first week is a good idea. For once in your life, you’re free from high school, away from the old you, and free to start fresh. That idea terrifies you to the bone.

You’re uncertain whether the old you was the best version of yourself. The old you who got As and a 5.0 GPA, president of the student council, volunteer in animal shelters, helper of the homeless, and did everything and anything to stay busy and put up the facade that you are productive and getting shit done. You wonder whether that ‘old you’ was you at your maximum potential, and now you’re uncertain whether you have downgraded, gone slack, or worse, fell of the wagon.

But let me tell you something.

You’re wrong.

Sounds harsh, right? Don’t bite my head off. Yet.

That old you? That high school you that poops out rainbows and is perfect at everything? Yeah, let’s scrap that. Actually, you know what? I challenge you to fail.

Be a failure, fuck up a few times, admit that you’re ignorant and you don’t know everything. Admit that you aren’t perfect, because no one is. Step down your high horse and challenge yourself to new experiences, experiences that make you uncomfortable, scared and uncertain about yourself because uncertainty will keep you grounded. You have yet to know who you are, and you still have a chance to determine who you really want to be.

But to change, you must first accept that who you are, before college, was someone you loved. But now? You’ll love the new version; the better, more prepared, and brighter version of yourself.

Be uncertain of your friends, question why you’re with them in the first place. It’s not to weaken your friendships, but to actually remember the reason why you guys were friends in the first place. This strengthens relationships and gets rid of toxic people in your life.

Be uncertain of your abilities. Don’t be confident that you’re amazing, or else you’ll set yourself impossibly high standards that you (and no one) can never reach. Instead, doubt your abilities and take every opportunity to grow and improve yourself (and yes, failing is a part of that).

Be uncertain of yourself. Do not restrict yourself to a profile you made on Facebook and say it’s written in stone therefore you cannot change. College is a time of uncertainty, and yes, that includes yourself. Discover more about yourself by doubting who you really are; it sounds counterintuitive, but trust me; I found more of myself when I said, “You know what? This is not who I am. This is not the best version of myself. I can improve and be better than who I was, and I know, I will get to know the new me and love them just as much as I loved the old me.”

And now, in college, surrounded by six cups of coffee, consecutive late nights, deadly deadlines, group projects, midterms, finals, friends, fake friends, friends-who-you’re-not-really-friends-with-but-don’t-want-to-see-die friends, rejection, failure, success and happiness, it’s the best time to be unsure of yourself.

Because only when you are unsure, you will find the motivation to understand who you really are. And that for me, is a goal worth pursuing. TC mark

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