College. Sounds so exciting and terrifying at the same time, don’t you think? After a range of applications that never seemed to end, painful waiting, yes and no’s, difficult decisions that no one else can make, it’s time to face it – this summer is the last that you spend at home.
As the day X gets closer, most students-to-be experience some serious pre-college stress. You’re going to meet many new people, make friends with some of them, adjust to a new environment, and learn how to leave without an easy reach to your family. It’s no wonder that you feel anxious – your life changes dramatically! But don’t worry, because we have some recommendations on how to calm down and actually benefit from the upcoming college years.
1. Communicate with Current Students
Talk to someone who’s currently attending your future alma mater or have already survived it. Listening to them telling you about their first year and everything they went through will help you get a better idea of what the future holds for you. These undergrads are the best resource for what academic life looks like, from college assignments to parties and extra-curricular activities.
2. Have a Plan
Make sure to start your college having a concrete plan for the first college weeks. Plan the things like signing up for as many courses as you possibly can, meeting your roommate to enjoy a new page in your lives, and trying as many things as possible.
3. Go to Orientation
Even if college-related events are happening online or aren’t required, you have to attend each. Or, at least, do your best to attend each. At orientation, students have an opportunity to get the feeling for their future campus, check all clubs and organizations, as well as make new friends. All these things will make the expectation of the blurred future less scary. What is more, many colleges and universities give a chance to contact your adviser, which means you’ll be able to decide which classes to take with the assistance of a trained and skillful person.
4. Get Some Sleep
When you’re finally in college, your sleep routine will be definitely far from perfect. Getting more healthy sleep while you’re still at home will help your mind and body do some re’s: re-balance, re-charge, and re-focus. In other words, make sure to go to sleep early and have a quick nap during the daytime. A regular sleep schedule is an integral part of a healthy lifestyle that, in turn, will help you hit the college and feel less anxious about these grandiose changes.
5. Improve or Develop the Skills for Living in a Dorm
Another way to cope with your pre-college nerves is to focus on your upcoming lifestyle. Many things are going to change. At this point, you will have to handle all those housekeeping hardships on your own, so do yourself a favor – learn to wash and fold your laundry, cook some simple means, and do a basic food-shopping list. Thus, you will become much better prepared for the times when you’ll be living on your own away from your mom and dad.
6. Don’t Think You’re Not Smart Enough
Without a doubt, college is going to be more difficult than attending high school. However, that doesn’t mean that you’re going to fail. Get ready to face a serious workload, and if you realize that you’ve drifted off, do not be shy to ask for help. College academic experts will connect you with the most relevant resources, such as workshops or tutoring centers ready to assist with any trouble.
7. Remember the Strength of Internet
You’ll be homesick, that’s true. But that’s normal for college freshmen. Even if you just go to the neighboring town to study, you’ll definitely end up thinking about your family, friends and missing them a lot. The great news is that the power of the internet can save you here! The cyber-world enables you to maintain relationships with your loved ones twenty-four hours a day. Agree on the most suitable time to communicate with people you care about and miss. After a couple of clicks, you will see them all, and the homesickness will transform into the joy of sharing your college experience and exchanging news.
8. You’re Not Alone!
Finally, every first-year student is in the same boat and feeling anxious. Physical symptoms like anxiety, lack of appetite, or sleep are normal, especially when it comes to fear of the unfamiliar or different. For many undergrads, it takes the entire first academic year to get used to college, classes, new people, and feel comfortable. For that reason, if you feel awkward or uncomfortable at some point, ensure to embrace these emotions and focus on what you do. Cheers to your new chapter of life!