Ahh 14th grade, more commonly known as sophomore year of college. In my opinion, sophomore year is such an awkward year. You are past being a little baby freshman, but you aren’t yet at the status of an upperclassman. In high school, people used to say sophomore year was the year of the “wise fools,” meaning you are past the nervousness and uncertainty of starting a new chapter in your life, but you still haven’t grasped it yet and are still a complete idiot when it comes to life. I couldn’t agree more with this concept. After freshman year, I thought I had a grasp on life, on love, on school, and on college. Lol was I wrong. Sophomore year was truly a learning and eye-opening experience (that flew by faster than I can even explain) and I’d like to share some things I learned. Just a little FYI: every college is different, Greek Life is like a bubble, and I’m pretty sure I was born on a different planet. However, I’d still like to think some people had similar experiences. Anyways, this is what I took from sophomore year.
1. You find out who your true friends are.
You know the expression, “the struggle is real.” Well for me, sophomore year the struggle was (literally) real. Through the rough patches I experienced, I learned who truly cares about me and how #blessed I am to have certain people in my life. Some people who I expected would be there when I need them were not or didn’t seem to care, and then there were friends who surprised me. People I never or rarely spoke to became a shoulder to cry on, a source of advice, and a “beacon of hope.” (Yes, I just quoted The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Sue me. Also see my instagram bio quote)
2. Yet, you meet new, amazing people.
Delta Gamma pledge class 2013. This is all you. You guys are the most amazing group of women I’ve ever met in my entire life, I’m so happy to be apart of this sisterhood. Yeah yeah, make fun of me all you want people, I don’t care. I just love these girls so much.
3. Boys are still complete idiots.
I mean I get most men (and some women, hey I don’t judge I partially include myself in this category) are just trying to fucktion, but still you got to tone it down a notch. SERIOUSLY I KNOW YOUR MOTHER RAISED YOU BETTER THAN THAT. It’s called respect. R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Need help? Ask any girl (that’s a friend), and she will happily explain the significance of this.
Can’t wait until I turn 21 so I can hit up bars, see ya later Fratstars (Bartender, one glass of chardonnay please? #iturnup)
4. Workout for yourself, not for others.
I love the gym (and yoga and core barre and spin and…..you get the idea) mainly because it makes me feel better mentally. I mean I’d be lying if I said getting toned wasn’t the ideal goal, but I just consider the mental benefits more of a incentive. Anyways, I used to be extremely self-conscious at the gym, and still am to some extent (I’m a work in progress) I always admired those girls who would be squatting and rowing and running and lifting in front of the boys like they owned the place. Who cares if you’re sweating like a pig and the boy from that one class is staring at you? Work it. Which brings me to number 5.
5. What Would Beyoncé Do?
Who run the world? Girls. This year I found that asking yourself this question can solve many questions whenever you feel insecure or have trouble making a decision. Think how Beyoncé would handle the situation, then do it. Girl power is a raging force that is taking over the world. Embrace it. Think Katniss in Hunger Games, Tris in Divergent, Jennifer Lawrence, Tina Fey, Demi Lovato, …the list goes on.
6. Your peers can be your role models.
Think that having role models is something for only when you’re a little kid? Wrong. You are never to old to look up to people and some of those people may be your best friends (or sorority sisters). I found so many role models in one year it amazes me. Yeah, it might sound cheesy, but the impact that people can have on you can be life-changing.
7. School is important, but your mental health should be your top priority.
It’s true. Some people, including myself, can often forget this.
8. Chocolate solves most problems.
I recommend See’s Chocolate Buttercreams, Trader Joe’s 100 Calorie Dark Chocolate Bars, or anything Dove.
9. Sometimes you need to take a social media vacation.
OH MY GOD PAIGE CATTON JUST SAID THAT?! WHATT?!?!?! (I’m a social media addict) Yes, sometimes it’s nice to stay away from your phone. Analyzing text messages, receiving and sending Snapchats, poke wars, Instagramming your dinner…give your brain a break.
10. “Comparison is the death of happiness.”
I came across this quote a couple of years ago and I’ve learned this year that it couldn’t be more true and on point. You will never, ever, ever be happy with yourself if you are constantly comparing yourself to others.
Yeah, sometimes I forget. I learned that Ujjayi yoga breathing really helps.
12. Sometimes you need your mom.
Ladies, it’s true. Mother always knows best.
13. It’s totally okay to stay in on the weekends and watch Netflix instead of going out.
Screw FOMO. Some Fridays you need to just watch Frozen, lay around in your pajamas, and go to bed by midnight.
14. “You do you.”
One of my friends told me this and I really took it to heart. However, I also now hear it everywhere. It’s the simplest advice, with such a deep meaning. You do you. Do what you want and don’t worry about what people think. I know it’s easier said than done (so much easier). But if you start doing things you want to do for yourself, then you will truly be on the road to happiness.