10 Things You Learn In College Outside The Classroom

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College is first seen as a time of studying hard and working towards a career. While this is accurate, the overall college experience gives people the opportunity to learn more than just what they read in textbooks. College students learn all these extra little things without even realizing it. Here are some of the things that they learn:

1. How to find true friends. This lesson usually doesn’t come right off the bat because when you’re starting out as a freshman, everyone is new and everyone wants to hang out. But over the years, you come to find who is truly your friend and who is not. College allows you to differentiate between a true friend and a fake friend, which is something that develops with time.

2. How to have a stable relationship. College relationships are way more serious than they are in high school. If you go through some crappy relationships during college, you are able to learn what you can do differently in future relationships in order to make them more stable. If you have secured yourself in a serious relationship in college, you learn how to maintain it, and throughout the relationship, you learn how to make it better. College is a time for maturing, and understanding how to resolve conflict with others.

3. How to have fun. Even though you have to be serious when it comes to classwork, college is a time for going out and doing fun things. You learn that it’s perfectly okay to give yourself a break once in awhile, because having fun is a crucial part of life.

4. How to take care of yourself. This refers to many different aspects of taking care of yourself, from learning how to essentially live on your own, to eating well and exercising. Usually freshman year, you don’t care much about eating healthy and getting enough sleep, but over the years you realize how important these things are.

5. How to be responsible. Responsibility is a huge part of college because not only are you responsible for getting your homework done in time, but you also have outside responsibilities that come along with your independence. As more responsibilities get thrown on you throughout the years, you learn how to be a more organized individual.

6. How to work with others. You’ve been taught at a young age how to work with others, but it really sinks in during college. This is mainly because you get stuck doing group projects and working with people who you might not get along with. Being put in situations like these allow you to become more mature, and learn how to work with people who are different from you.

7. How to try new things. College is a time where new opportunities fly at you from every angle. Being in a new place on your own allows you to branch out a bit more than you’re used to. This is a good thing because it opens you up to new interests and new things that you might have never even tried before.

8. How to ask for help. During your college years, you come to realize that it’s perfectly okay to ask for help when you’re lost or confused. This can range from getting help on schoolwork to getting help with personal problems. This is something you learn because you’re maturing and realizing that getting help isn’t a bad thing, it’s only another thing that contributes to your growth.

9. How to be involved. Colleges have so many different organizations that you’re bound to have found at least one that you belong to. This involvement gives you some experiences that you might not have had without college. It also helps you meet new people who are interested in similar things to you, and sometimes these people can become your life-long friends.

10. How to find yourself. Essentially, college is the time in your life where you find out what you want to do in your future. With that, comes finding yourself. During college, you’ll sometimes lose yourself during your journey, and you might not have even completely found yourself by the time you graduate. But this doesn’t mean that you will never find yourself. You can take everything you’ve learned in college and apply it to your life, while continuing on your journey after graduation.

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The Importance of Self-Reflection

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As individuals, we have each learned a lot from ourselves and from our own personal experiences. The problem is that we don’t always take the time to think about what we have learned. Each person learns valuable life lessons over a long period of time in their life, and it’s something worth reflecting about.

It’s important to think about everything you’ve gone through in life and see how much you’ve grown. Everyone grows up in their own way and at their own pace, but through this growing process, each person learns from mistakes, and learns from other people. Whenever you make a mistake, you tend to feel terrible about it in the moment, but after awhile, you look back on it and realize that it was a learning experience instead of something to be ashamed about. That is how everyone should view life because otherwise you’ll be sitting there with tons of regrets and you won’t be able to live life to the fullest.

As you get older and more mature, you begin to realize that everything in life happens for a reason. You begin to see what these reasons are and you are able to accept them. You should look back on the past and recognize how much you’ve changed since then. If you don’t take the time to think about it, you won’t get the opportunity to see how much you’ve grown and how much stronger you’ve gotten.

I’m currently a senior in college, so I spend a lot of time thinking about my years in college and how much I’ve changed. When I think about myself from freshman year, I can see a huge different in my maturity level, and the way I handle things that are thrown at me. I’m truly proud of how much I’ve grown since then and I’m proud of the way I’ve gone through my college years. I’ve made mistakes, but instead of feeling poorly about them, I smile, knowing that I won’t make the same mistakes again. I’ve also had people come and go from my life and it’s made me realize that they were never meant to be in my life. It’s interesting to think that during the span of 4 years, you can mature so much.

Self-reflection doesn’t have to take up all of your time. You don’t have to sit down and think about your whole past, but every once in awhile, just take at least five minutes out of your day to think about it. Once you see how far you’ve come, you’ll feel stronger than ever, and you’ll realize that you’re only going to get stronger as time goes on.

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Why you shouldn’t judge people

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Take a moment to look around and see the people around you. They might be classmates, fellow drivers on the road, people in a store, etc. No matter who they are, each one of them has a past. Each one of them has a story that you know absolutely nothing about. It’s not plausible to take a look at a girl or guy with dark clothes and piercings and think, “oh, they’re so emo” or “oh they must be depressed”. It’s not right to watch a girl walk by in a really short skirt and tight shirt and think, “oh, she’s a slut”. You don’t know these people; the only thing you know is what you see. We all know the old saying, “don’t judge a book by it’s cover”, yet most of us do it anyway. It’s natural human instinct to make assumptions about people just from their appearance. Does that make it okay? No.

People watching can be pretty exciting because everyone out there is so different from one another, that people just fascinate us. Sometimes we wonder what strangers think of us when we walk by them. Do they think we are happy? Do they think we are a kind person? Or maybe they think something negative about us because they see something physically about us that makes them speculate. Even if you never hear or see one ounce of judgement coming from a stranger to you, it still makes you wonder what people think about you. I believe that almost everyone has at least thought about this once in their life.

The problem can only be solved if you make the initiative to do something about it. Look for the good in people, even if you don’t know them. I try to do this, especially if I come across someone very different from myself. I try to think of something positive about that person, whether it be physically, or mentally, especially if I see them interact with someone. Over the summer, there was an elderly lady living in my apartment complex, and some would say she was a little “creepy”, mainly because she was missing teeth and talked about her cats a lot. Now, if that’s all I told you about her, you would probably wouldn’t think very highly of her, would you? Well I didn’t want to be that person who made a face or ran away every time I saw her. I wanted to focus on what kind of person she was. I didn’t really get to know her well at all, but what I did come to find is that she said hi to me every single time I saw her, along with asking me how I’m doing. I found it completely endearing that she would take time to talk to me, someone she doesn’t know, just to ask how my day is going. The conversations were always short-lived, but from those conversations, I didn’t see a creepy smile of missing teeth; I saw the friendly face of a kind stranger with a genuine heart. It always upset me when I saw the way people looked at her, even just thinking about it now.

It’s virtually impossible to get to know every single stranger that you see in your life, but it’s very possible to see the best light in them when you find yourself seeing the worst. You just have to remember that no matter how different someone looks, they are still human. We are all a part of the human species walking and living on Earth, breathing the same air, going to the same places, and doing the same things. What makes us unique is the way we choose to live life and the way we view life. Each person out there has at least one unique quality that makes them different from the person standing next to them. We just have to cherish that quality rather than see it for something negative.

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