Congrats recent graduates! I am so proud of you for making it through those crazy high school years! With graduation behind you, it’s about time you begin preparing for what life holds next -college! It may seem overwhelming now, but soon, you will be starting your first semester as a college student! While this is an extremely exciting time, it may also be very nerve-racking! In this post, I am going to share my best tips on ten of the biggest things that most high school graduates worry about!
1. What life holds next
As I mentioned above, preparing for your freshman year can be overwhelming fast! You have so many big changes coming up! Things like moving out of your parent’s house, living on campus with a stranger, figuring out what you want to do with your life, making friends with people you’ve never met before, studying for hard classes, and so much more are coming up quick! I know these changes may seem scary now, but in a few months you will look back and wonder why you were ever worried! So, my advice to you is to take things as they come. Don’t stress!
2. Making friends
Making friends is another big concern for many incoming students! Freshman orientation is the perfect time for you to start making friends in college because everyone is so open and willing to talk with others. I wrote a full post on how to make friends in college that I think would help you. The main thing is to get out there, talk to others, and be friendly! You will find your group of amazing new friends soon enough(:
3. Studying in college
The material that you will be learning in college is more difficult than the things you learn in high school, but I think that it is manageable as long as you know how to study and prepare for exams. Here are a few studying tips that might be able to help you! The important thing is to find what methods work for you! Personally, I have terrible handwriting so I type my notes so that I can actually read them. I also make notecards in order to study for tests in my most difficult classes. In my easier classes, I highlight through my notes and make sure to really study the important things. Remember, what works for me may not work as well for you so make sure that you take some time to figure out what studying and note taking methods help you prepare the best!
How much I study usually depends on the day and on how difficult each class is. For my easier, non-major classes, I usually only have to study two or three days in advance for two hours a day. For my more difficult classes like chemistry, biology, and genetics, I have had to start studying around a week in advance for multiple hours a day creating notecards, study guides, reviewing important notes and materials, and actually studying. Once you start your classes and have at least one test, you should have a better understanding of how much you will need to study for each class.
4. Time management
When it comes to managing time in college, it is important to invest in a planner that you love. Personally, I use a planner from the Day Designer for Blue Sky line at Target, and I absolutely adore it! It definitely helps me to handle my busy schedule more easily. I also have a post to help college students choose the right planner for them. You can check that out here!
Learning how to manage your time now is so important. I would strongly suggest that you start implementing a few time management tips as soon as possible! Here is a post with time management tips that I think will really help you!
5. Living with a roommate
Okay, so, in all honesty..I came to college knowing who my roommate would be because we went to high school together. However, I was able to find this post that might be able to help you choose a roommate! I do have a post on how to handle living with your new roommate though! You can check this one out here!
6. Handling the stress
College is going to be a very different experience for you with being away from home. The trick is to stay in contact with your family and your best high school friends through weekly phone calls, daily texts, or even FaceTime if you are into that. You can even try setting aside a specific time each week to just call your family and catch up. This will be a great way to help you know what’s going on back home even when you aren’t there.
One of my biggest tips for not getting overwhelmed with things to do is simply to say no more often. I use to agree to do everything, but I found that it made me so exhausted that I couldn’t do as well in classes! I just wasn’t able to give everything my best effort. Now, I say no to more things and am able to do a really great job on the handful of things that I do agree to do. I think that learning this before you come to college will be a huge help you to you!
Another way that I handle stress is by giving myself a little bit of time (30 minutes to an hour) every day to do something that I love! Things like reading a book, painting my nails, blogging, or even taking a nap are all things that I use to treat myself for all of the hard work that I have been doing. Me time is really a great way to get rid of that stress by relaxing, and I strongly suggest that you try it out!.
7. Choosing a college major
Choosing a college major is a big decision that can be pretty nerve racking! I think it is important to choose a subject that you enjoy, that you are good at, and that will challenge you! A friend of mine wrote a great post on how to choose a college major that I think you will find helpful!
8. Long distance relationship
Long distance relationships can be so hard, but I think it is so much easier if you are dating the right person. Both of you have to be willing to put in the time and extra effort of managing a LDR, calling, texting, facetiming, and taking trips to see each other whenever you can.
Learning to communicate long distance can be difficult and frustrating at times (I’m not gona sugar coat it)..What works for me and my boyfriend is to just be honest with each other and say how we feel instead of trying to get the other one to figure it out. It’s so hard to determine emotions when you’re a bajillion miles away, so opening up and saying what’s bothering you will make it way easier. I also wrote a really great post on handling a long distance relationship in college that I think could help with this!
9. Finding college scholarships
Paying for college is a big concern for many college students. College can be really expensive, and it can be quite difficult to work in college while trying to do your best in classes. Because of this, I have always tried to apply to at least three scholarships every semester. Here is a post that I wrote on what I do to find college scholarships that work for me. This post also includes a scholarship worksheet to help you through the process!
10. Getting a job on campus
I know that at my college students get selected for on-campus jobs based off of their FAFSA and monetary needs. I am not technically eligible to work on campus according to the FAFSA, but I was lucky enough to get in contact with my college’s volleyball coach and was able to sign on to help run the scoreboard during each home game for all four years of my college experience. This gives me a little scholarship every semester that helps cover extra fees. So, in order to get a job on-campus, you have to either have a family income that is in the range of on-campus job requirements or you can make contact with people who need student assistants in positions that you think you would be good at. It takes a little more effort this way, but it is worth it! A blogging friend of mine has a post about how to find on campus jobs that you would be great at. You can check it out here!
I hope this post helps answer some of your college questions! I know this may feel like a scary, confusing time in your life, but trust me when I say that it will be so much fun! If you want more help preparing for college, I strongly encourage you to sign up for my free mini freshman year prep course by signing up below! You are going to love it!
Are you an incoming freshman? I would love to hear your biggest takeaway from this post!
Grab your free mini-freshman year prep course!
Are you ready to start preparing for your freshman year of college? If so, this free course is the perfect way to get started!