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Before I dive in to a few too many photos of myself (aka grad pics) I thought this would be the perfect time to share with my readers the most important things to take away from college. A lot of people share semi-inpirational quotes like “I never let school interfere with my education” or something along those lines. It’s typically a quote that deprioritzes schooling and emphasizes the things you learn outside of the classroom.
Don’t get me wrong – the lessons you learn outside the classroom are really important – but so is your actual education. You know, the one you pay thousands of dollars a year for.
You will grow apart from some people. Some friends you will hold on to forever. Some friends are situational. Many people learn this in high school as they stay close to some people and lose touch with others. It’s not easy. In fact, it’s one of the hardest things I had to come to terms with was the fact that I wouldn’t be friends with people forever. If you walk away from college with just a few, hell even just one, good friend(s), that’s a success. College is small – there is a whole world outside of the university that you haven’t seen yet.
Don’t hold on to people who try to hold you back. If you ever come across someone, a boyfriend or friend, who doens’t want you to do what you want to do, leave. That is a huge red flag. The people who really love you will support you in your decisions and encourage you to do what you love.
Never regret something that made you happy. If it ever made you happy, even once, don’t regret it. Coming back from study abroad was one of the hardest things I ever did, but I was so happy when I studied abroad. Even after what I experienced when I returned, I would do it all over again. (Extra: study abroad if you can! If you want to study abroad, check out my post HERE on how to pick the best program for you!)
Don’t put things off until the last minute. Even as a recent graduate, I’m still guilty of this. I barely RSVP’d to graduation in time. Write everything down in a planner (read my post on “doing it all” in college HERE) and allocate time to do those long term projects. If you have time to do homework or study, do the homework and study. Do it when it won’t cut into your life. Do it when your friends are busy with other things. If you do things when you have spare time, it won’t feel like a burden later.
How to deal with failure. Failure is a part of life. I was never the kind of person who had to deal with rejection and failure, but I was introduced to a lot of it in college. It’s difficult and it can take a toll on you, but you will bounce back. It’s not about how many times you fall, but how many times you get back up.
Don’t be afraid to be a trailblazer. Take the lead on something. Don’t let the fear of responsibility or independence scare you. Those are the things that will help you grow as a person.
Being a trailblazer can be a lonely road. Speaking of trailblazing, it can be a bit lonely. You’ll discover that some people don’t support you and that can hurt. However, if you’re doing the things you love, it will not only feel less lonely, you’ll meet more people who share similar passions.
Take breaks. The human body is not meant to work at 100% capacity 100% of the time. The most important thing I can tell you is to take breaks. Your body is meant to have rest; it’s meant to have sleep. Sleep deprivation is real people. If you feel like your burning out, take a nap or a Netflix break. Find a way to take a break from the stressors in life, whether that’s hiking or knitting or journaling, anything! If you take breaks and step away from work, you’ll feel much more refreshed when you go back to work on it later.
The last lesson? Your parents know more than you think. Listen to them.
Now, the graduation photos! If you want to shop the dress I’m wearing (and the girl in the purple lace dress too) is on mega sale at a few retailers so I’ve linked them below!