5 Things I Wish I Had Known Before College

5 Things I Wish I Had Known Before College

5 Things I Wish I Had Known Before College

Little Lessons to Keep In Mind Whether You’re Going Back In Person or Not!

Hey, babes!

All my college homies, this one is for you!!!

Now that I’ve had some time to reflect on college and the experiences that have shaped me into the person I am becoming, it got me thinking about how different some of my college experiences were compared to what I thought they would be. It happens with any new and exciting event in our lives- we construct our ideal version in our heads and then reality swoops in and puts us back in check.

Truthfully, so much of what I had told myself would happen in college didn’t happen. Things I was told to expect didn’t always happen according to “plan.” But sometimes they did! There were also SO many times where the unexpected happened! For better or worse, I think everything in my journey happened when and how it needed to happen. I learned every lesson just how I was supposed to in my four-year journey.

5 Things I Wish I Had Known Before College
My first first day of college (left) vs. my last first day of college (right)

But were there other things that happened in my college experience I wish someone had warned me about? ABSOLUTELY! Did I go through experiences that I wish I could have been even the slightest bit more prepared for? FOR SURE! Looking back, were there lessons and principles I wish I would’ve kept in mind more as I navigated my way through classes, relationships, and my field of study? YOU BETCHA! So, I want to share with you 5 little nuggets of advice you can hold onto as you venture into college, continue your education, or just as you need them in life!

  1. Being a Planner is NOT all bad!– When I got to college, I was NOT the “planner” that I am now. I knew I would have the drive to get organized, but I really didn’t know where to start. Owning a planner certainly was a massive step in the right direction. I used a color coding system to keep my classes and assignments on track! Knowing that my own organization was one part of my life I could control during the huge adjustment made me feel more at ease. When I would get the syllabus, I would immediately write down due dates in my planner from the course calendar, so I was always able to be one step ahead, and never have anything sneak up on me! Finding the best way for you to organize your school work will take a little bit of weight off of your shoulders, and YOU DO have control over that! If you’re looking for a great planner with enough space to keep all of your obligations on track check out the Planit Planner here! (use code ANGELAL10 for 10% off!)
  2. Try to see the light at the end of the tunnel!– I know that sometimes, no matter how much you plan, everything happening at a given time during college can be extremely stressful. It always seems to work out that all of your major tests, projects, and auditions fall in the same week. A cruel joke, right? And when you’re right in the thick of it, it can be extremely difficult to fathom how you will ever get through it. I encourage you to always try to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Try to tap into your breath as best as you can to center yourself. It is so much easier said than done (trust me, I spent four years rarely trying to see how things would be on the other side), but I promise you when those crazy, busy times have ended, you’ll sit back and wonder “why was I causing myself so much stress?” Everything will work out, I promise!
  3. Don’t expose yourself to unnecessary stress!– While college is largely about furthering your education, another huge aspect is your social life! Making new friends, meeting new people, and trying new things are what the college experience is all about. To be completely candid- you will most likely experience some drama in your four years, whether it has to do with friendships, relationships, work, etc. My best advice to you is to distance yourself from any unnecessarily dramatic situation as soon as you possibly can. If there are people that you become friends with or you start dating that quickly prove themselves to be toxic individuals, cut them out. The people that you meet in college and let become a large part of your life should not cost you your sanity! This also goes for any obligations you take on. Try not to bite off more than you can chew! If you say yes to something but find that it is causing you more stress than joy, be completely honest with yourself and the other individuals involved, and savor your sanity.
  4. You will lose friends, and that’s ok.– Friendships is an amazingly weird thing. As we grow, our friendships either grow with us, or they don’t- and THAT IS OK! It doesn’t make you a bad person or make others bad people. Going into college, if you lose touch with some of the people you went to high school with that is completely normal. You may be on totally different schedules or across the world from one another, plus you are both adapting to this new way of life! If the friendships are worth it to both of you, you will keep in touch. Even once you get to college, your friendships will shift! You may be closer to one person one year and closer to another the next. Your relationships will either grow with you or you may grow out of them, but either way YOU are GROWING!
  5. Give yourself some grace.- One important thing to remember in college is that change is inevitable. And sometimes change can be messy. In times that are tough, I want you to remember not to be so hard on yourself. There will be times when you cannot do it all, you cannot commit to every event or every hang out because you need to take time for you, and that is ok. It is also important to remember you cannot please everyone, nor is it your responsibility to. You may not be everyone’s cup of tea, and they might not be yours! So, be unapologetically yourself and grant yourself some grace, baby!

I know that college may look a little different for some this year, but I think that some of these little reminders are things you can carry with you all the time- whether you’re in a college setting or not! Your experience is what you make it, so always remember that something amazing can come out of something unexpected or different. You’re going to crush this academic year, I’m rooting for you!

Best of luck!

~ Ang

Me First

Me First

Me First
Four Lessons Learned in my First Year of Self-Love

Four Lessons Learned In My Year of Self-Love

Hey y’all!

This week, I wanted to talk about self-love and the journey toward self-love. I’ve used this quote before in a post, but I think it is just so perfect. I love Sex and the City, and one of Carrie’s famous quotes is “Don’t forget to fall in love with yourself first.” I have always loved this quote and have always heard people say that you can’t truly love another person or give them everything until you learn to love yourself and give yourself everything first. I will be the first to admit that I haven’t always lived by this mantra myself.

Around this time last year, I had just gotten out of a relationship, and I knew it was time for me to take some time to really learn how to be on my own. I didn’t truly know who I was independent of a relationship, so I made a promise to myself to be single and not enter a serious relationship for at least a year. It was about time that I started actively practicing self-love rather than seeking it out from someone else. I’ll admit, I was a little hesitant in making this promise. At the time, I didn’t feel like I had enough faith in myself to believe I could honor that promise, no matter how sad or lonely I felt. A year later, I am proud to say that I did kept my promise, and this has been a year full of growth, self-reflection, and lessons learned.

So, what have I learned? Here are some of the most important lessons I have embraced, for better or for worse, in my first year of true self-love:

I learned…how independent I am.

Cultivating independence after spending a lot of time being dependent on other people is one of the toughest things for me in the last year. I spent a lot of time looking for approval and justification from other people, and I realized that not only did I not need that validation from someone else, but I was capable of giving myself all the validation that I would ever need. I’m a very poor decision maker, so I always looked to someone else to back me up in what I was saying, doing, or choosing and by doing that I wasn’t always allowing myself to listen to and trust my intuition. Cultivating my relationship with my intuition is something that I always shoved down, because I knew I could count on someone else to help me decide, rather than just listening to what MY heart and gut were telling me. At the end of the day, my intuition is never going to go away, so why shouldn’t I work on trusting it?

I also spent a lot of time not doing things myself because I knew someone else would help me or take care of it. While it always made my life a little bit easier, I realize now how unhealthy that constant dependency was! The one person that will remain constant in your life is YOU! I think it is important to become as independent as we possibly can so that as we move forward in life, we won’t constantly be seeking some kind of dependency in any aspect of our lives!

I learned…how important my friendships are.

I could write a whole separate post on this note, that’s how strongly I feel about it. I love my girlfriends more than anything, and this year really helped me be a better friend and strengthen my friendships. For the first time in four years, most of my close girl friends and I found ourselves all single all at the same time and we bonded even more than we ever had before. Being that it was my first-year single in a long time, I really leaned on my girls to get me through the moments of sadness and frustration I felt. When I needed someone to snuggle up and drink wine with, they were always there. Whenever I felt like giving up on my promise of self-love, they were right behind me to pick my back up and remind me what I was working towards. Next to myself, they are the other constant relationships I have in my life that I now know will last me a lifetime. I truly can’t imagine valuing my friendships any other way than how I value them now.

I learned…I am strong enough to get through tough times.

When I have been in relationships in the past, whenever something went wrong or I was upset and having a bad day, having that one individual to turn to always seemed like a security blanket. I knew I’d have someone to turn to who would unconditionally listen to me or bring me ice cream, or even just sit with me. Now, I am fortunate enough to have friends and family who would do all of that for me if I ever asked them to, but the relationship with friends/family in that way just never felt the same as it did with a significant other, if that makes sense? This year has been FULL of upsets, especially in the last six months, and sometimes, not having that one special person to turn to was hard and just different. But ultimately, NOT having that one person to turn to made me MUCH stronger. I have learned how to handle upsets and bad days on my own by developing my own healthy habits rather than dumping all my problems onto someone else. It’s a skill I think will serve me well in life, and I’m grateful for it.

I learned…how to value being on my own.

I’m an extrovert, but also an introvert. I think living with roommates in college (love you girls) did just make me value my alone time, and I cherish the times I can just sit in quiet and kind of do whatever I want. Obviously, when you’re in a relationship sometimes you have to sacrifice some of your alone time! I think at the place I was in last year I was looking to have some more time to focus on me and my personal growth. This year has given me just that! Were there lots of times I felt the exact opposite feeling and didn’t want to be by myself after having always spent my time with someone else? Sure. But being on my own helped me create more space for the things I needed/wanted to focus on in my education, my career, and my personal life.

Me First
Four Lessons Learned In My Year of Self-Love

This past year opened my eyes and shown me all I needed and wanted to work on within myself, and has also taught me a lot about my worth and what I expect from people that I allow into my life going forward. It also allowed me to be a little selfish with my time and my energy, as most 20-something’s should really have the freedom to do anyway! Life with a significant other was always special and beautiful in its own way, but life without one has also been special and beautiful too. I love myself more now than I think I have ever loved myself, and I have this year centered on self-love to thank for that. Simply, all in an effort to be better for myself, my friends, my family, and for people I haven’t even met yet.

Lots of love xoxo

~ Ang