In school, we lead a very sheltered and protected life. We’re surrounded by friends we’ve grown up with and teachers who look out for us. No wonder then that entering college is like entering the real world, replete with challenges, opportunities, freedom and responsibilities.
1 School to college is a transition: There is a huge contrast between the environment at school and that of college. Moving from school to college is a transition and everybody takes time adjusting to it.
2 Be open to change: It’s best not to expect things to be the way they used to be. College life is going to be different. Don’t be too rigid; be open to changes and embrace new opportunities.
3 Do not try and ape: In a bid to fit in, don’t forget who you are or what your values are. Be true to yourself and don’t try to blindly ape others.
4 Do not be distracted by freedom: College offers students a new-found sense of freedom. While it’s good to enjoy this freedom, don’t get lost in it. Stay focused on your goals.
5 Stay in touch with school friends: College life will introduce you to many new people. But keep in mind that you don’t need to choose between your old school friends and new friends from college. Make an effort to keep in touch with school buddies and make new friends in order to ensure a smooth transition.
6 Take your career seriously: At the end of the day, going to college plays an integral part in establishing one’s career path. Take your career seriously and always keep your long-term goals in sight.
7 Be in charge of yourself: Going to college is like a rite of passage. It’s time to take responsibility for your actions. Don’t make excuses for your mistakes. Be in charge of yourself.
8 Take more roles at home: You’re now grown up enough to pitch in with household work. Help out as much as you can at home and be careful with your finances.
9 Have fun, in limits: Having fun is an important part of growing up. Enjoy yourself with your friends but don’t cross the line. Don’t do things you might come to regret later.
10 Keep time for family: College is going to keep you very busy, but it’s important to make an effort to take time out for your family as well. Your family can be your greatest source of strength and comfort. Try and strike a balance.
The author is director, Mental Health and Behavioural Sciences, Fortis Healthcare