Life Lessons I Haven't Learned Yet

I graduate from college in less than a month. I have seen a lot of graduating seniors write about things that they have learned since freshman year or things they wish that somebody had told them before they started college.

Sure, I have also learned a lot of things in my four years of college. But there are a lot of things that I have not learned as well. I mean, there are so many Important Life Lessons that people have tried to teach me, or I have tried to teach myself, but I just cannot seem to get them through my thick skull.

But, even though I haven’t fully applied these lessons to my life, actually writing them down and acknowledging them must count for something, right? I may be too dense to learn these life lessons, but maybe by writing them down, somebody can learn from me.


No matter how hard you try, you can’t change people.

My mother recently said this to me when I complained to her about a girl that annoys me in one of my classes. She keeps being disrespectful to the professor, clearly does not even attempt to do the reading, and spends more time on Facebook than she does being invested in the lesson. When my mother told me that there was no use in complaining about this girl and trying to change her behavior, I sort of sat there dumbfounded. This girl is not my friend; she’s barely even my acquaintance. So why should I waste so much energy worried about what she does in class if I can’t change her behavior?


Don’t be happy when other people fail.

Recently, my least favorite softball player on my least favorite team got suspended indefinitely for drug possession and use. I rejoiced at this news. I imagined the team’s rankings going down without their star player and her lost scholarship money. Then I thought, why am I happy about this? Sure, I may not like this team or this player, but that doesn’t give me the right to be happy about their misfortune. I should instead focus on the players that I do admire, and on their many successes.


Stop focusing on things you can’t change.

I tend to get very emotional over sports scores, and I am very superstitious when I watch games. According to my strange thinking, if I sit in the same position that I sat in yesterday, or eat the same foods, or wear the same clothes, then my team will win again. But that is never the case. No team is ever influenced by the way I sit when I watch games, but if my team loses, I think it’s my fault. I have absolutely no control over these scores, and I need to constantly remind myself that I cannot affect they way they play. I should spend less time getting angry at their losses and more time enjoying the game.


Don’t lash out at people who are trying to help you.

A few nights ago, I texted my roommate when I was feeling upset about a job rejection. Clearly, all she wanted to do was to comfort and help me, but I texted back a kind of nasty retort. I apologized, and she told me that I have a tendency to say meanish things when I’m upset, but that I don’t mean to say them. I must learn to stop projecting my upset feelings onto other people when I’m dealing with situations where there is nobody to blame.


I am far from a perfect person. These four unlearned lessons only scratch the surface of how many things I still need to learn. Hopefully, as I part with college, I will continue to mature and apply more Important Life Lessons to my life.


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