As my first week of my last semester of college comes to an end, I’m faced with a feeling that excites me and freaks me out all at once; this is really it.
Sure enough, college was a challenge. Going away to another country and completely stepping out of my comfort zone, put me far away from everything I was familiar with. And yet, it was kind of the most organized and structured way to try something different. Being on my own was a nice transition into adulthood but knowing I had four years of pretty much the same thing was always a security blanket, and eventually became my new norm and what I was comfortable with.
Now it’s time to be an adult, for real this time. After years of having a clear path to follow, now it is up to me to decide what is next.
The idea of having complete freedom excites me but terrifies me at the same time. What if I pick the wrong path? What if I don’t make the right decisions? What if I disappoint my family?
Truth is, I probably will make some mistakes. I will probably screw up a couple times and wish I was back in college where I knew exactly what I was doing. But, at the end of the day, isn’t that what life is all about?
When embracing the idea of change and accepting possible and inevitable mistakes as potential life lessons, it doesn’t seem as scary. Every functional adult was at this point of their lives once, confused, not knowing what to do and yet, having probably the best time of the lives.
What seems terrifying and confusing now, will become my new norm eventually. Life won’t pause for me to adjust, I just have to throw myself into this new stage and hope I eventually catch up.
At this point, it feels like everyone knows what they are doing but me. But lets be honest, as excited as we all are, I’m probably not the only one wondering what the hell happens next. Life is pretty much an organized mess.
Fake it till you make it right?
Somehow, at some point things will fall into place, for better or for worse. Realizing that gives me some peace of mind. But being the control freak that I am, I cannot help but wonder how I can make everything happen, and how I can have somewhat of a plan. It is kind of impossible to embrace the madness when I’ve been planning my life since I was five.
So, here is my advice, as a freaked out college student who really doesn’t know what they’re doing and yet, tries to control and plan for everything: plan for the unknown while having fun!
Have some sort of general plan to point yourself in whatever direction you choose but accept and embrace that the plan might change. Maybe 100 times, or not at all, and that is okay.
Enjoy the last few months of the incredibly fun mess that college can be. Enjoy spending this much time with your friends because when real life hits, it will be harder to see them. Embrace the chance of knowledge, even if you’re in class that you have zero interest in, a cool teacher might come along and change your perspective. Enjoy the freedom of being young and care free, most of us are only responsible for ourselves at this point in our lives.
But most importantly, learn to embrace change. Time will come and go; life is a journey. Don’t hold on to a stage in your life, not giving yourself the opportunity to experience what comes next. There is really no end point, new goals will come and every stage will bring challenges and good times. When graduation day comes, remember that everyone is in the same boat, get excited by the unknown rather than letting it scare you.
Life is truly about the journey, not the destination. As scary as it can be, everything will fall into place eventually. Let college be a stage in your life that you will look back on, from time to time and remember the good times and what you learned from it, not only in the classroom, and not what you wish you could to back to, life can only go up from here if you let it.