Four Things You Need to Know That They Don’t Teach You in College

Sometimes I’ll try to do a really simple task, fail, and think to myself, “Seriously? Thank God they can’t revoke degrees because mine would totally be taken away right now.” This happened the other day. I had just gotten a cute little strappy tank top, but I couldn’t figure out which strap went where and I got my arms all tangled. It got pretty serious for a while. When I think back to what my degree actually did cover, it was a lot of practical stuff. Non tank top-related for sure. But there are things I’ve learned since college that you really should be able to take a freshman seminar to learn about. These points include:

Not everyone will like you and that’s actually fine

I want people to like me. I want people to be happy. I don’t want to offend anyone if at all possible. But sometimes people aren’t going to like you, despite your best efforts. As the great philosopher Dita Von Teese once said, “You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world and there’s still going to be somebody who hates peaches.”

You have to protect your free time

When you’re an adult, free time is limited and you’ve got to defend it against activities and people who don’t make you happy. Yet somehow it’s really easy to let it get swept away. When you look back on the day, you’re not even totally sure what you did. It’s good to periodically check in and verify that what you’re doing is actually a good use of time. Buzzfeed quizzes are awesome, but do you REALLY need to know what house you’d be in if you were in Harry Potter? Okay, bad example. Yes, you really do need to know. Carry on.

You know more than you think

There are a lot of times when I question myself and my choices, only to realize that I actually did know what I was doing. It’s easy to doubt yourself, but sometimes a little credit is necessary.

You can care about someone but that doesn’t necessarily mean you should be together

We all have that one person that we think about when we should be trying to fall asleep at night or paying attention on a conference call or something. Whether it’s an ex or a crush that never really went anywhere, you toy around with the “what ifs” in your brain. Should you get back together? Should you try to pursue a relationship? Or if you’re really striking out on (insert name of your favorite dating site here) that day maybe you’re like, “Okay, we are MEANT to be together. Let’s make this thing HAPPEN.” This doesn’t actually mean you should be together in real life. You can love the idea of a person or the history you share with a person or the excitement of having a crush on a person and not actually love that human being. You can even love that person and it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the right relationship for you. It can be hard to make that distinction because emotions are messy and convoluted. But try to sort through them and notice the differences. They matter.

Life lessons, man. If only you could read them in a book and not have to struggle through them the hard way, you know? Have a life lesson worth sharing? I’d love to hear it! Tell me about it in the comments.

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