Not Just Surviving but Thriving in College

Some students struggle with college and might come to a point where they only want to do the bare minimum to get their degree and not push themselves to their fullest potential. But the fact is, college is supposed to prepare you for the future — both personally and professionally. If you just survive instead of trying to thrive, you might not get that dream job you truly want, and you certainly won’t have the amazing college experience that you could have. Here are some tips to help you thrive in college.

1. Have a good routine and self-discipline.

When you first get to college, it’s easy to fall into unhealthy habits because of the stress of a new environment, classes and other personal reasons. It’s good to set a routine for yourself to help with that stress and create stability during the chaos. But, in order for this routine to work, you have to have some self-discipline to actually stick with it. This routine shouldn’t just revolve around school, it should also have some time for yourself and friends so you can relax and clear your head before tackling homework.

a professor teaching a class

2. Accept and learn from mistakes.

We all make mistakes (especially when we’re young college kids). Sometimes those mistakes can be embarrassing or disappointing, which can make you discouraged and want to give up. You have to move forward by accepting those mistakes and learning from them so you can take a different approach in the future. College and life are all about learning and making mistakes — that’s how you continue to grow and start to thrive a lot more. Also, always ask for help if you need it. Don’t suffer in silence when people are there wanting to help you!

3. Get involved.

While you are in college there are so many things you can do to help you have an exciting social life. Homework and work can take up a lot of your time, but getting involved in sports, clubs, or organizations that let you explore your interests can be a great way to have new and different experiences and make new friends. For example, JWU has clubs for singing, dancing, filmmaking, acting and so much more.

Two jwu students signing a banner

4. Prioritize studying.

You came to college for a reason, so make it count! I know the idea of finally being on your own can be fun, with no one there to tell you what to do, but it’s also an opportunity to learn how to set boundaries and make your self-discipline stronger. Doing your homework or studying for a test can be stressful, especially when you only have yourself to motivate you. But nothing beats the feeling of getting your work done and crossing it off your to-do list. As you take different courses, you’ll learn what study method works best for you and figure out what you need to prioritize more.

5. Make time for yourself.

You should always make time for yourself because it’s easy to get caught up in the busyness of juggling classes, homework and jobs. Your body is a temple, and you need to make sure you are healthy physically, mentally, and spiritually to be able to put your best foot forward in anything that you pursue. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, take that mental health day to recharge!

two students in a hammock

6. Don’t rush.

Take your time figuring out what you need to do, academically or personally. Everyone is on a different path, even if they have the same major as you. You might look around and feel like everyone else is moving faster than you, getting amazing internships, acing exams, and feeling confident about their future career plans. Don’t worry! You aren’t falling behind, you’re just on your own path. Other people’s success doesn’t devalue your own accomplishments. Focus on yourself, your goals and your progress.

a breathe sign

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