Thursday, September 3, 2015

Top 10 Things I Wish I Knew When I Started College

So this week I entered into my fourth year as a student at BYU.

I'm sorry, WHAT????

All week I have been trying to wrap my mind around the fact that I should really be a grown up by now.

I'm not.

But I'll ket you know if I ever do get there, yeah?

Anyway, I've been thinking about some things I wish I had known before I came to college and thought I'd share some of them here... give em a read!

10. Get out of your comfort zone.

In college you will come to find that Netflix can be a very dear friend of yours. This is all fine and dandy, but I promise the people outside of your dorm or apartment are really awesome too. Say yes when you get asked to go to this school activity or that school activity. Say yes to dates even if you aren't 100% sure you are going to like that person. Go to that party you don't know anyone at. Some nights it will stink and you will curse me under your breath as you drive home, but some day when you look back at these years you will be happy to find you filled them with experiences. Netflix is loyal, and will always be there for you. These limited years require your attention. Get out of your comfort zone.

9. Keep an open mind.

College is a brilliant place for ideas to be tossed around. We are here to learn and grow. You won't agree with every professors opinion and thats okay. In fact I hope you care enough to consider whether or not you agree with them. That being said, give yourself the freedom to separate yourself from other peoples ideals. Really work to study things out and to discover what it is that you believe about the world around you. We were given good brains and as students we need to be seeking truth. Let's keep ourselves open enough to finding that, and never let ourselves become stagnant learners. Keep an open mind.

8. Get to know your teachers.

You will be surprised how much your teachers actually want you to do well. At the beginning of the semester introduce yourself so that they know who you are. Ask questions and use this semester to glean all that you can from them. These teachers are here for a reason, and have something valuable you can learn from them. Also if you are in a pickle at the end of the semester, and they know who you are already, they are way more likely to be lenient with you. I can say this from experience, get to know your teachers.

7. Your roommates are grownups in training as well... be gracious with them.

I for one am thankful that I have lived with people who have been incredibly forgiving of my domestic short comings. They helped me clean up the bubbles on the floor when I put dish soap in the dish washer. They forgave me when I threw out their new package of lettuce that I had mistaken for old. They kindly asked me to turn off my curling iron before it burned the house down. They did this and much much more! And you know what? I think I might have been able to help them a little bit too. Because we have done it with kindness and love, we have been able to keep close and grow. So be gracious with your grownup in training. You probably aren't awesome at life yet either.

6. Go to bed.

Some nights are totally crazy and totally worth staying up for. Others aren't. Pay attention to this and make the time for sleeping. Everything else in your life will work better if you are taking the time to get an adequate amount of rest. Go to bed.

5. You can warm an icy exterior.

There will be people you will meet that just act too cool for you. Some of these people might actually be shy, others will just be kind of rude. Regardless, you have the power to change this. Reach out to these people with kindness just as you would someone who was lonely. Give them a compliment and show them how awesome you are, and watch their icy exterior melt away. There are people who need your friendship in this life, they just don't know it yet. Don't miss out because you were scared. It might take a few times to get them all of the way there, but you will be shocked to find that confidence and kindness is an excellent cure for the common "too cool disease."

4. Plan ahead.

Reviewing the syllabus may seem boring and monotonous this first week of school, but the schedule found there will be your lifeline. Take the time your first week of school to write out every due date in your calendar. Set up a plan of attack for how you will accomplish all that you have going on. This will free you up for more fun activities and cut your stress in half. Having a plan is half the battle this semester. Believe me, plan ahead.

3.  There are different versions of awesome.

While you are in school, you are bound to get your heartbroken once or twice. It's basically inevitable. On the days you aren't getting your heart broken, chances are you are doing the heartbreaking yourself. In order to survive this crazy phase of life it is important that you learn one powerful lesson... There are difference versions of awesome. It's ok if someone doesn't want to date you. It doesn't make them a bad person and it doesn't alter your value in any way. It simply means you are someone else's kind of awesome. If you can remember this, dating will be a lot less painful for you. Just remember you are somebodies right thing at the right time, so go ahead and wait for it.

2. You are not just here for a slip of paper.

We aren't just getting an education so we can get jobs. Yes that is a high incentive for why we are here, but we are also here to develop ourselves as people. We are learning the skills that will allow us to better serve others. We are preparing for a variety of circumstances we can't even imagine right now. Our education is invaluable to our lives not because it will increase our salary, but because it will increase our wisdom. So let's be careful not to waste our time here. Let's learn to love to learn and walk out of here with more than a slip of paper.

1. Be where the spirit is.

During this time of our life we will be making a lot of vitally important decisions. We desperately need the spirit in order to make these. We need to attend institute and religion classes. We need to say our prayers and read our scriptures. We need to keep the commandments, and we need to keep the Savior at the center of our lives. We absolutely cannot become lenient on any of these. We need to be where the spirit is.

Now heaven knows I don't necessarily know what I am talking about here. These are just some things I have found useful and thought I'd share with some of ya'll as you enter into this next year of school.

Best of luck fellow students.
We're all gonna need it.



  1. You said it so well!! I agree 100%. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. To be honest, I feel like every one of those things are still applicable even after school. Love you lady.

  2. I like this! Hope you don't mind if i save it for later. My daughter will start college in a year. I think this will be great to share with her! Thanks Haley!

    1. Oh thank you! Of course, please share it with her!!!

  3. I like this! Hope you don't mind if i save it for later. My daughter will start college in a year. I think this will be great to share with her! Thanks Haley!