Friday, July 10, 2015

College Preparation

Summer is well into swing! Bright sun, pool days, and all the wonderful summery things are back again and I am loving it. On a literary note, I finally finished The Deathly Hallows a few weeks ago! I cried when I read the last words. It was like a part of me died. Let me tell you, I went through an emotional roller coaster of PPD (post-potter depression). I was in denial for about two or three days. I finally came to grips with reality, and was at peace. Well, the only reason I was really at peace was because I found out about the new HP-related movie coming out next year. I quickly put Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them on hold at the library. 

So anyway, after returning from PPD, I finally accepted the fact that I was a muggle and I needed to get ready for college. It's a shame Hogwarts won't accept FAFSA. Not that FAFSA gave me much help anyway. 

It's time for the major college preparation to begin. There's a lot I need to take care of, especially with school starting in almost a month! Here are a few things off of my to-do list that might help any other students or anyone else in a new season of life or just looking to get reorganized. 

1. Major Room Cleaning
It's amazing how much junk can collect over the course of high school. Since I'm starting a new season of life, it's time to give my room a clean slate. I am living at home my freshman year, but to anyone moving into a dorm, still clean out your space; it will make the move much easier. First, I cleaned out my whole desk. Everything in there now is basic desk stuff (paper, pens/pencils),stationary, supplies, etc.). Lots of room for the new school year now. Next came my clothing, which I'm still working on. I picked out the things I no longer wore (I got rid of a TON of stuff a year or so ago), sold a few things (only made $8, what even), and gave away the rest. I finally have accumulated a new wardrobe over senior year, so I am ready to go for college. I moved on to my bookshelf. I sold a bunch of books to a used book store, which made lots of room for new books and gave me a little extra cash.  Since I'm going to be living at home, I am also in the process of changing things up in my room. I had an 11-year old tell me my room looked like a little girl's room. After being slightly offended, I realized it actually did. It was time for my room to mature. New photos, new decor, but nothing outside my budget. It's coming along nicely! 

2. Tech Clean Up
Have a family computer? Wipe off everything on your side of the computer. Odds are you already have your own computer or you're getting one (make sure your computer is completely cleaned off too; college will take up a lot of memory), so you won't really need the family computer. Your parents will appreciate the extra memory on their computer anyway. Don't get rid of your side completely though. Use it as a second "back up" source to save important documents and things. You won't regret it. Accidents happen. Also, go ahead and  clean up your social media. I have been deleting posts from middle school and freshman and sophomore year on Facebook and Twitter. Indeed, it is a tedious task (and one that will make you somewhat humiliated when you see the things you posted back in middle school and early highschool), but you will be so glad when you do it. I promise. Lastly, get your emails wiped off too. It is also pretty tedious, but so worth it to not have pages and pages of emails that are waiting space.

3. Establishing Healthy Habits
Ever heard of the freshman fifteen? No, it's not referring to the average amount of class hours during freshman year. It's the average weight gained freshman year. How about no. Get into the habit NOW of eating healthy and exercising, so come fall, you will have a set routine and plan. You want your brain and body to be in tip top shape in order to handle the stresses and chaos of college. Be mindful of what you eat, and exercise regularly. Find things you love that are healthy and just go with them. The university I am going to  recently built a new gym/workout center and it is pretty sweet. Odds are, your gym on campus will be free to use, so take advantage of it! Its a great way to reduce stress, get in shape, and to get know other students. And then there's the matter of sleep. Make it a point to get 8+ hours a night, whatever it takes. I know, some nights it just isn't going to happen, but no amount of coffee consumed will ever make your body work as well as it does when you're getting a good amount of sleep. When you get 8+ hours, your brain works better, you're less stressed, and heck, you can even loose weight better. Also, lets not forget our H20. In the habit of not drinking 8 cups a day? Change that. Water cleans out the toxins in your body, hydrates you, and makes you feel better. In fact, most headaches and other health issues can be linked to not enough water. So drink up. 

4. Acting my age
This is partially an attitude adjustment and partially an organizational adjustment. First, listen to your parents. No matter how much you want to get away from them or how much you don't like them, they've had more experience in life than you. Truth is, we young adults don't know everything we think we know.  Your parents can and usually will help you figure out adulthood if you respect them for a change. Second, I can't speak for everybody, but I was blessed to have parents that took care of all the complicated stuff for me for my childhood and teen years. Now that I am becoming an adult, it's time to be aware of what all of it actually means. Taxes, insurance, healthcare, money...get informed! It may not all make sense right off the bat, but it's good to have a head start at knowing the costs of being an adult. I've been organizing my important info into files, thinking through budgets, as simply trying to prepare to be an adult.   So start making your own doctor and dentist appointments. If your parents pay for the majority of your basic needs, start helping out. Get a job, for goodness sake. Make sure you know how to handle your money too. The last thing you want is debt. It's a burden that weighs heavy on you until it's is paid. Basically, you're like a slave to it until its paid off. So avoid it. Watch what you spend from now on. 

5. Time management
This is a biggie for me. Now that I have a job and I will be starting college, I need to start managing my time appropriately. In highschool, my schedule was pretty insane. College, however, will be a whole new level of insane. Being home schooled, it was so easy and ever so tempting to get sidetracked on Pinterest or Twitter when I was supposed to be doing homework. With 16 hours this fall, I don't have time to get sidetracked. Its time to start using my time wisely and focusing on tasks and their priority. 


These are just a few things I'm working on to prep for college. I have lots more to take care of, but I suppose thats another story. My intention for the next month is to have my life like a blank canvas. Not necessarily dull and blank, rather, a painting waiting to happen. A canvas that is ready to be painted. I have made a lot of habits in high school, some good and some not-so-good. As we enter college or a new season of life, I encourage you to desire to be the best "you" that you have ever been. End bad habits. Add on to the good ones. It will be a journey like never before. 

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