I’m about to defy everything my parents once taught my five-year-old self on being a decent human being in one sentence: In college, You’re allowed to be selfish. Now when I say this it does not mean that you can just disregard all moral standards and be a complete jerk, but rather cut yourself some slack when establishing yourself in your new world. People my age are way too hard on themselves because theres a lot at stake, but giving yourself a break every once in a while can make everything a little less scary. So what does being selfish in this new sense mean?
It means you’re allowed to stand up for yourself, even in times when others think you’re not right. You are the only one who knows whats best for you.
It means you’re allowed to cut people off, because you do not owe anyone anything. Especially if they aren’t contributing in a positive manner to your life.
It means you’re allowed to act and make decisions for yourself. You’re in charge of you, its not up to your parents anymore, so don’t keep living your life a certain way just to keep them (or anyone else for that matter) happy.
It means you have no one to impress, at least for a little while. Obviously you want to be able to impress future employers with your stellar grades and resume, but you have 4 years to work on that. Socially, you have zero obligations to set any standards. Its not high school anymore.
It means this is a time to develop and work on me, myself and I. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing, or what someone might think. College is a time to work on just you without outside influences to worry about.
It means you can explore every possible option out there to find whats best for you, whether it be the new option in the dinning hall or a random class you’ve been dying to take.
It means you shouldn’t settle for less. This is the time to learn not let people walk all over you. If something or someone upsets you, speak up about it! Whats the worst that can happen? Chances are you’ll never see the person again, and better yet you have zero obligation to if they aren’t a positive addition to your life. People will also learn to better respect you, and will rely on your honesty.
The best part of accepting all of the above are the people that accumulate around you in the process, and who stick by the improved version of yourself. These people can be old and new friends, but regardless of where they came from they are in for the long haul. They’ve seen your wackiest and most fragile sides, and are there for you as much as you’re there for them.