Transitioning to your new life in college is a crazy, challenging, and rewarding experience that is undoubtedly going to send you on an emotional rollercoaster. You are going to be having a ton of fun making incredible memories with the people you meet on campus and you’ll be exposed to an endless amount of opportunity, but it’s not going to be all fun and games. Adjusting to your new schedule and the new people surrounding you isn’t easy, and it’s not supposed to be – transitioning into college is going to make you grow as a person and create new habits you’ll carry with you through life, and in the end the struggles will be worth it, you just have to know how to cope.
There are going to be a ton of things you are dealing with: roommates, homesickness, a massive workload, and so much more. But I promise you that once you get into the swing of things, it gets easier. I thought up some of the things I struggled with the most when I entered college, and I thought I’d let you know how I handled these situations, to hopefully help you out!
This one is a big one that nearly all freshman deal with – missing the comforts of home. Chances are, if you go away for college you are not going to be seeing your family, friends, or other loved ones every day, or even every month. And that’s OK. Here’s an embarrassing confession: When I still hadn’t adjusted to college a whole 2 weeks in, I listened to Carrie Underwood’s song Temporary Home on repeat. And about 2 weeks after that I realized I was being a drama queen, and campus quickly started to feel like home to me.
There are a ton of ways that you can help minimize the feeling of homesickness, and not all of them will work for everyone, but chances are that at least one will work for you:
- Call your loved ones regularly – if you miss them, call them and let them know! Chances are that they miss you, too, and you’re going to feel a lot better when you talk to them.
- Bring a reminder of home to college – I
wasam that girl with a million stuffed animals on her bed because they remind me of home.
- Get out there and do something – don’t wallow in your homesickness! You are being given the opportunity to study at an incredible college on an incredible campus and chances are there is something to do or see. College isn’t going to feel like home until you are familiar with it, so go familiarize yourself! This one helped me more than anything else!
- Personalize your room – if you live in a dorm, there’s a good chance that it looks like a prison cell. Fix that! Hang up posters, tapestry, anything you have that is going to give your room personality! You’re stuck there, make it somewhere that you want to be!
A Huge Workload.
College is a million times harder than high school, and that’s the whole point. If you got into that college, it means that you are more than capable of handling it, you just need to figure out how. One thing to keep in mind is how you’re prioritizing your time, we all have the same 24 hours in a day, some people just spend that time better than others.
- Keep a planner – I am blown away by people who are able to function without one. And even if you can function without one, keeping one will relieve you from having to keep everything organized in your head. Put it down on paper so you can physically see what your day looks like and you can figure out what tasks must be done today, and what ones can be done tomorrow.
- Stop getting distracted – I am writing this from the computer lab in my building because my laptop has way too many distractions and I have to much to do today to allow myself to waste 40 minutes on social media. If you have a lot to do – get away from anything that can distract you. This means friends, your phone, Instagram, etc.
- Talk to your professors – if you truly have way too much to do one week, talk to your professors. They are people too, and if you lay out everything you have to do that week, they may just offer you an extension.
This is one I struggled with until this year, actually. Last year I had friends, but not close friends. The friends that I made last year liked to spend their time a lot differently than I do, so most time spent with them was at meal times and in class, leaving me on my own during the evenings and weekends. This year I have really great friends that I spend a lot of time with because I finally figured out how to make friends in college!
- Remember that everyone is in the same situation that you are – everyone is wanting to make friends and meet new people. If you feel awkward, you’re not alone. Don’t let that deter you from pursuing new friendships!
- Ask for phone numbers – if you meet someone and want to be their friend, ask for there number as soon as possible. If your campus is huge there is a good chance that you’re not going to see them ever again unless you ask them to hang out, which will be difficult to do without their number.
- Hang out with them – it’s always awkward transitioning from casual acquaintances to friends, but the transition will go a lot quicker if you make the first move and just ask them to hang out. Chances are they are hoping to make friends, too, and they will be really excited you asked!
Do Your Research.
If you’re reading this – you’re already on top of it! I have a ton of college posts here but I’ve only covered the tip of the iceberg! There is so much information out there on surviving college that it would take an army of writers to cover – and lucky for you the UChic team did just that! They are launching their new book, UChic: College Girls’ Real Advice for Your First Year (and Beyond!) and it covers everything a young collegiate needs to know from dating in the digital age, to protecting yourself against sexual assault, to mastering the ins and outs of networking. In other words, it’s basically the college girls guidebook for success. As a bonus – part of the proceeds from the book go to fund their 1000 Dream Scholarship, where they award scholarships to help awesome girls reach their dreams! They were kind enough to offer a book for me to give away to one of you lovely folk, along with their new Gracie tech case! You can enter the giveaway below!