After my first year of college, I learned a lot about myself, but it was on no level easy.

Like some say, it really is survival of the fittest.

Don’t fear though, it isn’t that hard if you follow these tips.

1. Work before play.

Please don’t be the person that avoids doing work or putting effort into the things they do, it’ll ensure failure.

In college, you will find yourself procrastinating. Stop. It honestly really pays off to do your work as soon as you can, then have fun. It’ll create less stress.

2. Give yourself time

If you feel yourself starting to freak out, stop what you’re doing and take a 5 to 15 minute break. No, it’s not the end of the world to take a break. You will be able to get your work done faster.

With a clear mind going into your work, you will be more efficient.

3. Find what makes you smile

For me it’s videos of puppies or children. They make me smile because they are absolutely adorable.

Now, watch this when taking a walk or doesn’t help you. It is proven that smiling and laughter are stress relievers. You need to smile every once in a while.

4. Be cautious of who you befriend

Going into college, especially if you are going in solo, is terrifyingly exciting.

As soon as you get there most people will be either super quiet or extremely nice. This means that the first people you meet, or the people in your residence hall, or the girl who sits next to you in your Life 101 lecture, will seem so wonderful and you want to be their friend. It sounds perfect, they seem nice, they seem like great people… right? wrong.

It is important to be aware that everyone is coming from different families, cities, or even countries. They each have a different culture and a different way of thinking and acting. I’m not saying don’t make friends with everyone, but just choose your close friends wisely.

5. Talk to your teachers

Seriously. TALK TO YOUR TEACHERS.

I know how intimidating it is. You’re a freshman and they’re professors, but they are human, let me remind you.

If anyone, befriend your teachers. Go to their office hours, sit down and let them know if you are confused about any topic or simply talk to them about your life, but also be conscious of their time.

This also really helps because if the teacher knows you they will mostly likely be more understanding if you are worried about a test and need extra time. Professors are super nice and are almost always willing to help.

6. Eat!

I think this was actually my number one problem. I never ate, not because I was anorexic but because I would forget to.

Set aside time to eat. It is beyond important. If you have no food in your body you have no fuel for your brain. You are going to burn yourself out if you try to study on an empty stomach. Bring snacks with you everywhere you go. You’ll thank yourself when you’re studying.

Freshman 15 is real if you don’t take care of yourself. I gained 30 pounds because I didn’t. I would stay up super late and eat only when my roommate reminded me to. I ended up being diagnosed with dyspepsia. My stomach acid accumulated too much, from not eating and began going up my throat, burning my esophagus and stomach. I had to take pills and set an alarm to eat.

Seriously if you take anything away from this remember to take care of yourself.

7. Ask around about your textbooks

By doing this, you could save almost $400!! If you ask students who had been in that class prior, if they even used the textbook or if they have it, it could save you so much money.

But if the student says they do use the textbook, research where to get it before asking if you can have there’s because a lot of the time the student will try to sell it to you for more than they got it for.

Also, the school bookstore will always be the most expensive.

8. Never go out late on a Sunday or weekday

This will ruin you, no joke. You will be exhausted the next morning and have no day to recuperate until the weekend.

Seriously, it’s a dumb idea so just don’t.

9. Always have smart friends

If and when you do go out, don’t go out with people who won’t look out for you. This is really important.

Make sure they are people who care for your safety and are smart about what they are doing.

Take care of yourself and your friends. If you ever don’t feel safe, make sure you know someone you can call to take you home.

10. Balance your fun and responsibilities

It is good to have fun. Remember that, but also remember that too much fun is no bueno. If you stress too much about what you have to do, you’ll overwhelm yourself. On the other hand if you go out every night and never do your work, you will fail.

Make sure to even everything out.

If you have any experiences that taught you something, you can comment below!

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