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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SBU chapter.

I would say that I relatively have had a successful college career. I love my degree, I love my friends and I think I have made a name for myself on this campus. My junior year has easily been my favorite year at college so far. While I still have a year left at Bona’s, I know that I will leave this place a little better than I found it. 

Success is a wildly vague term. Success means something different for every person. However, if someone were to ask my advice on how to make your college career just a little bit brighter, here are four tips that I would offer to them:

say hello to more people

This is a super small gesture I do not see talked about enough. Even if you have only met someone once, give them a simple wave! If I can remember their name, I try to always throw that in there too since everyone loves to hear their own name. It may feel a bit awkward if you are not super close, but I don’t think any of us have felt WORSE if an acquaintance said hello to us. If anything, I have been pleasantly surprised. Once you say hello to more people instead of looking down at your phone, the more people that will say hello back. It’s a lovely, friendly cycle. 

Just ask

The worst thing someone can say is no. So, for all of you out there with big ideas, budget proposals and modification ideas, just ask. This can apply to clubs, in the classroom, or anywhere else. I learned this first-hand during Her Campus. Between our print publication and other club activities, I had to ask our dean, Dean Chimbel, for a considerable amount of money this academic year. I had a feeling he would say no to a few of my asks, but I thought I would respectfully ask anyway. Even if he had said no, at least I tried, but he didn’t say no! He was happy to fit us into the budget and help us achieve our wildest dreams. Even if they say no, there is really no harm in asking if you do it kindly.

stay connected to your roots

I am very lucky to have a wonderful home life and a very good relationship with my immediate family. If this does not apply to you, feel free to ignore this advice. For those of us who are close with our parents, make sure to keep up with that relationship. It is so easy to get lost in all the things you have going on at school that your relationship becomes a bit more distant. That is natural, AND, at the same time, it is important to remember the people who got you to where you are.  There can be a balance if you allow for it. These people may be helping you pay for college! Try to keep them in the loop as much as is comfortable. 

Find what fills your cup

This has been instrumental to sustaining my mental health at college. I define something as filling my cup when it goes beyond, academic, work, or social “wins”. While I love my friends and clubs to the end of the earth, I find the most peace when I also have something for just myself. I have been Catholic my whole life and find a lot of peace when I invest my time in places like Mass or Mt. Irenaeus. My relationship with God fills my cup. For you, it could be yoga, manifestation, journaling or even just alone time. FIlling my cup is entirely removed from any sort of awards or validation. There are always points, at least for me, when you need a break from everyone and all of your responsibilities. It is helpful to have something to rely on that is completely separate from the every hustle and bustle of college life. 

There is no real definition of success I could give. My instinct is to say “being happy,” but I think that oversimplifies the highs and lows of your early 20’s. For me, in my current context, true success is finding balance, making mistakes, trying again, and having a good time. But someone else could give a million different definitions. I hope these tips help you find more success than just academic success (even though that’s important too).  

Claire Fisher is the co-campus correspondent for the St. Bonaventure Her Campus chapter. She is responsible for chapter recruitment communications, editing of weekly articles, general managing of chapter logistics and even implemented a once-a-year print issue of HC at SBU. Claire is currently a third-year student studying Communication, Social Justice & Advocacy with focus on theology and political science. Aside from Her Campus, Claire currently serves as co-president of Jandoli Women in Communication, passionate about representation in the media field, and is a student reporter for PolitiFact NY. Lastly, she is a content creator and the communications officer for St. Bonaventure College Democrats. In her time away from academics, Claire loves to go hiking on local trails and enjoys talking about her love of music. She is an avid Spotify user, and will engage in any conversation regarding Meg March.