Advice for college students

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Do you think your life will be exciting? Is it already exciting?

When you first start college, it feels like your life is just getting going. You figure out what you want to do for fun, what clubs you want to go to, who you want to flirt with, you figure out the booty calls, the homework, how to convince the parents that you want to have a completely impractical major like art or geology instead of business, law or medicine.

The fact is that most of us in college don’t really think things through. We don’t think about how much fun we’re having or why we’re having fun instead of going to class. Or why we’re dating the wrong people. Or spending lots of money on things that we won’t remember buying in a year but we’ll still have the credit card debts.

When we’re young, life stretches before us, life without end. We know that we can make mistakes and make up for them. We can walk away from relationships and find new ones. We can make whatever mistakes we want and it will all be okay.

We’re Americans and Americans can always start over. You drop out of college and you can jump back in.

When I was in college, I had a boyfriend, and then another, and then another. One I was quite crazy for. He was a good dancer. That seemed like a good reason to stick with him for a while. He could dance. And dancing was all that was important. We danced to Eighties music of course and dressed like vagabonds.

Getting a real job also didn’t seem very important. I liked having odd jobs and jumping from one odd gig to another. I was thirty when I thought, time to get started! And another ten years before I thought I ought to step on it.

College is a good time to explore different majors, different ideas, different relationships. It’s a good time. A fun time. Best not to waste it.

I would suggest to today’s students to take classes just for fun. To spend plenty of time with your family and your friends. To make friends wisely. To not run up too much debt. College is supposed to be a fun time, make the best of it.

Don’t live a marginal life. Don’t sit in the shadows and watch other people having fun. Take a class that seems scary but that you really want to try. Try for a job that seems outrageous. Like you’ll never get it, but try anyway. Jump into pools, swim in rivers, run through parks, go to parties that rock your world, but leave before it gets too crazy. Try to pull out before the cops show up.

Make your decisions out of joy not fear. There are no dinosaurs, there are no saber tooth tigers. You have your whole life ahead of you. Enjoy it.

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Published in: on August 26, 2013 at 9:34 pm  Leave a Comment  
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