As a graduating senior, there are so many things that I wish I had known before embarking on my four years of undergrad. If I could go back and do it again, I 100% would, but there are a few things I would have done differently. These are the most important lessons I have learned over the past four years:
- You’re allowed to say no: From people you don’t necessarily like asking you to hang out, to clubs begging you to join, you don’t owe them a courteous “yes”. There are so many times I spread myself way too thin, finding myself in over my head and wishing that I had just told a few people “no”.
- Take breaks when you need them: College can be pretty overwhelming, and Clark’s bubble-like atmosphere can be suffocating at times. There is nothing wrong with taking a break from everything, whether that be by not socializing for a few days, or going home for a weekend.
- Learn when to walk away: From a friendship or a relationship, it’s important to recognize when it’s either toxic, or has just naturally run its course. You have to make room in your life for better things to come into your life and if you’re clinging onto the past then you won’t be able to move forward.
- Embrace the lessons to be learned: Realistically, I have learned so much more outside of the classroom than in it. The past four years, especially my senior year, have been the most transformative of my life. I hardly even recognize my freshman year self, and I owe this growth to all of the people who have come into my life, and even those who are no longer in my life.
- It flies by: You’ve probably heard this a hundred times from parents and family friends, but college really does fly by. In some ways, it feels like it’s been the longest four years of my life, but in other ways it feels like I blinked and it’s over. There are so many nights that I stayed in just to watch Netflix, or to finish an assignment that I easily could have started sooner, and I fully regret not having spent those nights with my best friends. Take advantage of all the freedom you have during this time, and allow yourself to make stupid mistakes before you’re too old to make them!