What I Wish I Had Known

Next week, I begin my final semester of college. It's so strange to think about where I started freshman year. I was nervous and alone (literally, I was the only one from my graduating class to attend my school) and I didn't know what to expect. Looking back on the past 3.5 years, I've learned so much but there are still many things I wish I had known before starting college. So, from an almost-graduated senior to the freshmen staring at their cinderblock dorm room walls, here are the many (many) things I wish I had known.


  1. There is no cookie cutter version of college. Everyone's experience is different.
  2. Feeling not okay is not okay.
  3. Do not be afraid to reach out for help.
  4. YOU should be your number one priority.
  5. Sometimes the nights in the library will be just as memorable as the nights spent out and about.
  6. Eat the Taco Bell. Go to Sonic. Order the pizza.
  7. But don't skip out on the gym. (Learned a little too late on this one.)
  8. Find an organizational system that works for YOU.
  9. Productive and creative outlets are incredibly important for your mental well-being.
  10. DRINK WATER!!!
  11. Study abroad as much as you possibly can afford. You will learn much more out in the world than just sitting in the classroom.
  12. You are not weak for showing emotions.
  13. Boys suck. Don't listen to them. You deserve better.
  14. They will break your heart and you will think the world is ending, but it's not. Keep getting out of bed anyway.
  15. Friends come and go. Even the ones you think are forever.
  16. Take notes. Study them.
  17. Worry less about what people think.
  18. Never, EVER, judge someone for what they wear. 
  19. Be kind to everyone you meet.
  20. Take a deep breath.
  21. Everything happens for a reason. I know it sucks, but it's true.
  22. Being homesick is completely normal!!!!!
  23. You cannot control other people. You can control how you respond.
  24. Find a professor you can trust. Talk to them.
  25. Cry if you need to. But then be done with it.
  26. Instagram is not real life, but it's almost impossible not to get caught up in it. Familiarize yourself with the "deactivate" button and take a step back.
  27. You are much, much more than the amount of likes your picture gets.
  28. You are so incredibly young. Don't try to grow up so fast.
  29. If you don't bend, you will break.
  30. Learn to laugh at yourself, but avoid self-deprecating humor.
  31. Don't let the world beat you down.
  32. Learn to apologize. But only apologize when you are sincere about it.
  33. You are the source of your happiness.
  34. Wash your face. Moisturize your skin.
  35. Stand up for what you believe in.
  36. Make mistakes, learn your lessons, move on.
  37. Loosen up! People will act differently than you, but college is not the time for a judgmental attitude.
  38. If you don't love yourself, how can you expect anyone else to?
  39. Sometimes, the best response is no response.
  40. If he wants to call, he will call.
  41. Find somewhere or something that you are passionate about and spend as much time there as you can.
  42. Figure out productive ways to channel your whole range of emotion: everything from blind rage (it happens) to elation.
  43. Reaching out to your on-campus counseling center will make you feel so much better.
  44. It is scary to ask for help, but that doesn't mean that you should try and do it all yourself.
  45. Smile more.
  46. Respond to people's messages sooner rather than later. (Applies to: emails, texts, voicemail, Tinder, Twitter, Facebook, IDK just respond.)
  47. Use this time to branch out. Talk to people you never thought you would be friends with. Learn from people whose opinions differ from yours.
  48. Prove yourself wrong, if no one else.
  49. Never give up. Never look back.
  50. Even through the thick of it, you will survive. I know it seems like everything is going wrong, but I promise you, you are stronger than you think.