Practical ways to prepare for college
Practical ways to prepare for college. It’s a big world out there! We’re sure you have big dreams for your future and are ready to go get ‘em! Now that you’re leaving home, we have a few suggestions on practical ways to prepare for your freshman year of college!
Adulting is harder than it seems. A lot harder. As you learn to balance all the things in your life; work, fun, relationships, there will be falls and mistakes. Don’t take them personally and try to learn from them. You probably didn’t get the balance thing on a bike the first time, right? Neither will you as a grown-up. But you will.
Things to Keep in Mind
Preparation is never a waste of time and while you can’t possibly anticipate everything, talking with your parents or other trusted adults is a good start. Do you know someone already in college? Do you know someone who is at your college? Pick their brains on some of their experiences in their first year. Some questions to ask might be:
- What did you bring with you?
- What were you sorry you forgot?
- What surprised you?
- If you did it over again, what would you do differently?
The “Not College” Stuff
Not only are you heading to school, but you are also leaving the comforts of home with your parents. You will be surprised at how much they do for you. Sometimes experience is the only way to learn. For example, there are reasons your mom hounded you about the dirty dishes or laundry in your room. Or that you have to buy things like toilet paper, ketchup, forks, knives, and spoons. Or that nobody will pile you out of bed for your classes anymore. Old habits die hard, and you’re bound to have to break more than one.
- If you’re lucky enough to have your parents’ help, you’re very lucky. If not, and your financial skills are either lacking or non-existent, get busy with a course or two on budgeting and the reality of living in the world. Even if you have help, eventually you will need to be self-sustaining. You may need to get work and it’s important to know how much you need from that job to pay your way.
- If you will be living in a dorm, you may have a food allowance that is included with your tuition. You may not. Either way, you gotta eat, right? Living on ramen and red licorice whips will get old, fast. A poor diet will drag down your ability to sleep, study, and pay attention in class. A balanced diet is not equal parts junk food and good food, just…FYI. Eat good food…greens, grains, and fruit.
- Health. Of course, your overall health needs to be…overall. Often young people push past signals from their minds and bodies because of peer pressure and freshman college life is notorious for bullying and mob mentality. Your comfort zones will be challenged often. It’s ok to say “no”.
The college experience can be so exciting! You may change your mind on your major several times. You may decide to go in a completely different direction. Remember, nothing is set in stone. Allow yourself to make mistakes! You are learning not only about your career fields; you are learning to be an adult…it takes some time.
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Maybe Spending time with the family,