There are a few pesky things you can’t avoid in life; change is one of them. Some people detest change–they want consistency and to be able to rely on the way things have been. It’s more comfortable that way. Other people embrace it, and seek change in every way possible. These are the people who get drastic hair cuts and tattoos on a whim, because it is something new. Change can be exhilarating, but it can also be terrifying. It can be small or it can be life altering. No matter what is different, you have to learn how to accept it somehow, because things can’t stay the same forever.
College presents change left and right. Over summer break everything can change, and I am realizing it has. It’s over three months away from campus and close friends. That’s a lot of time to change your views and make new decisions about what you want in life. It’s months to lose touch with people or gain stronger bonds with others.
With a new semester upon us, I have had a lot of time to reflect on the changes in my life and with my friends. So much is different, and things can’t go back to the way they were. But hopefully these changes will be for the best and add more positivity to my life. What can you do to make change positive in your life?
Make a list of goals for the semester. When you’re making decisions, think back to this list and ask yourself which choice will get you closer to achieving your goals. You don’t have everything mapped out and perfectly planned. But if you have an idea of what you want to happen in the future, then you have something to work towards.
Focus on you. Sometimes being a little selfish isn’t a bad thing. This doesn’t mean you isolate yourselves from friends and family and only do what is best for you. It means that you can still be a good friend without going on every emotional roller-coaster that people you care about are on. Other people are going to go through hard times and lose themselves a little bit. Do what you can to be a good friend. Everyone needs a support system, but know that you cannot solve other people’s problems. You need to focus on your happiness, too. The only way you can be a good friend is if you are able to take care of yourself first.
Get involved. Join an organization, a club or intramural sport, or find a club with that relates to what you want to study (this is a great way to meet like-minded people and see what other people are doing to achieve their dreams). Making friends is fun. You might meet someone that you connect with or find a new talent or leadership position. Take advantage of the opportunities you have on campus, because they won’t be around forever. This can help you make positive changes in your life, even if it only means developing better time management skills from being busier.
Surround yourself with people who make you a better person. This might be one of the most important things you can do not only in college, but also in life. Your best friends should be the people who push you to be better and stronger. They should make you feel good about who you are as a person, and they should make you feel like you matter. If someone is causing you pain or distress, you probably don’t need them in your life. They aren’t worth it. Life is way too short to put up with people that try to devalue your self worth and make you feel like you have to be who they want you to be. No one can force you do anything or make you feel a certain way. Take control of who you surround yourself with, and don’t let other people’s negativity pull you down.
Always work on improving yourself. I read something this morning that said to have a pep talk with yourself every morning. It sounds kind of silly at first–why would I want to talk to myself, nonetheless be motivational or inspirational to myself? But when you think about it, it makes so much sense. I like to think about it as if I am looking back on this moment in five years, or 10 years, will I be happy with the choice I made? If I am not proud of a decision, why should I expect anyone else to be proud or impressed by it? We can all constantly do something to improve ourselves.
Live in the now. You have heard it a million times: there is no time like today. Try not to get too wrapped up in the past, because you can’t change your story once it is written. Instead of trying to do a re-write, fill your future with stories you are proud to share. Accept the changes in your life, and do your best to appreciate a good thing while it’s there, because it might not last forever. One of my favorite reality shows has the tag line “Expect the Unexpected”–that should be your life motto.
Everything you know will change at some point. Some of it will be good and some of it will be bad, but if you are striving to better yourself, you will know how to deal with it and overcome it.
How do you deal with change? Do you have another suggestions?