Sooo, it’s been a while…

To start things off, I would like to sincerely apologize for the lack of weekly posts on my end. I could make excuses like, “oh, I was really busy with finals,” or “life has been really grueling me these past few weeks” or “Cali was too much fun, and I didn’t have access to wifi there”, and while all excuses are completely valid and true, I realized that I could’ve found the time to write if I really wanted to. So, I won’t shower you with empty excuses and will attempt to do better in the future. After all, action speaks louder than words. On the bright side, the business and craziness of the past month has inspired me to create this new post.

So, graduation weekend for the college students ended not to long ago, and most of us who are still waiting for that glorious day to knock on our doors, got a chance to see what our graduation day could possibly look like. For me, that was imagining myself graduating with a summa cum laude, magma cum laude or just a cum laude, but I wanted some kind of laude attached to my name. And that got me thinking….

What’s it going to be like in two years?

_MG_3413Graduation has come and gone.

Students who have dedicated 2, 4, or maybe even 6 years to completing their college career, have finally gotten their diploma’s and are ready to start fresh in the work world.

As I watched some of my graduating friends walk down the aisle to collect their diplomas and listened to the honors that they received, it got me thinking….what is my graduation going to be like?

Will I be able to walk on that podium in full stride listening to my friends and family cheer as my name is called out- “Julena Allen, Bachelor in Communications; suma cum laude,” or will it be less exciting and with the announcer just calling out my name? How will I feel as I grab the folder that signifies my completion of the four years in my college education? Will it be thrilling? Relieving? Or will I be worried about my next step in life?Will it matter if I don’t graduate with honors? Will it affect the way potential employers look at me? These were the questions that briefly crossed my mind as I cheered for my friends in support of their big day.

But then, I  was reminded of the awful fact- I still had four more semesters of projects, assignments, and finals before any of this graduation fantasy come true. This, led my mind to start another rampage- the survival rampage. How was I going to make it the next two years with decent grades and still have good grades in order to graduate from college with my suma cum laude or magma cum laude? That’s when I came up with six steps to make the next four semester bearable and hopefully achieve the cum laude of my dreams.

In college, it’s important for you to remember these 6 things in order to survive:

  1. Don’t over work yourself. This was the very first thing I thought of when I reminisced on the past year. Most may feel the need to just work, workout, and do schoolwork so that their college years are set. I felt that way during my freshman year also, and granted my grades were phenomenal but I wasn’t really happy.  My advice to you is- have some fun, breathe, and relax a little. 
  2. Know your limitations. This one kind of goes with number one. In order not to over work yourself you kind of need to know  your limitations. Know what you are capable of and please, don’t aim to be something you aren’t. It won’t end pretty for you nor the people watching you. Do your best in everything but don’t overdue it.
  3. Remember where you are going.  There is one thing this past year has taught me about college- it’s a marathon, not a sprint. I started my freshman year with a goal in mind and put all my mind and energy into it, but when sophomore year started I was burnt out already. I didn’t really have the energy to continue as strong as I started off. That’s when I realized: my vision was too narrow. I only thought about the ‘then and now’ instead of thinking of where I wanted to end up.  That’s why, if you really want to succeed in college I advise you to  have a goal and a destination in mind. Know where you want to go and plan how to get there. If you know this, you will remain focused and it’ll be easier to pace yourself appropriately. 
  4. Take everything in stride. One thing’s for sure- your time in college will come with its ups and downs. All you need to do is to take it all in. Take in the good, the bad, and the ugly. Don’t fret when you fail, just do better next time.  College is an opportunity given to people who want to make something of themselves in a highly demanding society. Nothing worth having comes easy-the harder it is to attain the more precious it is when you receive it.
  5. Pace yourself and end strong.  I know it’s quite tempting to just give up in the end- especially when you have tried your hardest in the beginning and you don’t have much left to give. However, someone once told me that employers look to see how you started and how you finish. It’s a sign of your character letting them know if you quit over time or finish just as strong as you end.  The time I heard this, I was at my wits end with studying for finals but this gave me the needed shove to end strong. So, don’t slack off and finish just as strong as you started if not stronger.
  6. Life is an experience. What most people seem to forget is that life isn’t their friend,  life is an experience. You can choose your friends, and you may be able to have some control over situations you may find yourself in, but you can’t always control what happens to you. It’s how you respond to these situations that matters and that develops into your experience.

However, in the midst of my short enthusiastic, splendidly enriched thinking, another thought struck me. Why was it so important that I graduated with some sort of laude?Because at the time, (about a two weeks ago) I thought that was coolest thing ever. Imagine working your butt off for the past four years, having fun and still getting honors recognition?! How legit is that? Then I realized that while it is nice to aim for a laude of some sort, graduating with honors shouldn’t be my main focus. Neither should it be yours. College is like a bridge to the real world. I mean, there’s just enough fake in it for you to adjust before your life is completely ruined with a full time job, so why waste those precious years fretting about a laude of some sort?

After much rethinking, self-evaluation, and personal observation, I’ve come to the conclusion that your time and my time in college should be focused on doing our best in classes, working towards our goal (major and future job aspirations) and having fun. If you can achieve a laude  somewhere in there, good for you! Just don’t make it your main focus or you will be miserable.

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College isn’t just about making great grades and having a plush portfolio/ resume (though those things are important and definitely help), it is an experience. An experience that you will remember for the rest of your life.

The friends you make in college last longer than your high school ones the choices you decide for yourself have more of an impact on your future than ever before, and who knows, maybe that person you are dating could become your life partner. Are you really going to let it all pass you by in your pursuit of a honorable mention as you walk down the aisle for five seconds? If you are hesitating in your mind right now, let me help you out- the correct answer is no.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the educated advice and conclusion I have come up with after mulling over the laudes  for two weeks. You can either take my advice or leave it.

The choice is yours.

Until next time,

 

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