Use this year to set realistic goals. Here are five New Year’s Resolutions every college student should have. Apply this to any semester in college – freshman through returning student – to help balance your life and manage stress while you explore the world we live in. (Of course, if you’re not in college, you can still apply these New Year’s Resolutions to your everyday life.)
- Be Open To Change: Right now, you’re being challenged to explore new ideas and philosophies, make a game plan for your future, and adjust to a new lifestyle. That’s a lot to have on your plate. Accepting change will help you manage your anxieties and frustrations as well as help you with resolution number 2: breaking free of expectations.
- Break Free From Assumptions and Expectations: The best way to be let down by something is to make assumptions or set expectations. News flash, life doesn’t work that way. Assumptions allow you to ignore the truth and expectations are based on belief. Often, we set these ideals at unrealistic standards. You’ll enjoy next year much more if you let the world surprise you and see what is has to offer. Every life is different and yours is no exception.
- Make Friends With Someone Outside Your Normal “Friendsphere:” If you’re struggling with resolution #2, then this one might be of some assistance. Expand your friend circle outside its traditional circumference. Friends provide encouragement, comfort and support, and what friends outside of your normal “friendsphere” also offer is a new perspective and understanding that might not have been on your radar.
- Surprise Yourself: This resolution will come naturally if you follow #1-3. Hidden talents and pleasures remain hidden unless you are willing to try something new. Start small by trying a new food or activity. You won’t like everything, but you will surprise yourself at how far you’ve expanded your horizons!
- Explore A New Culture: Typically, when we think about culture, we assume that travel is involved. As a study abroad organization, we STRONGLY encourage everyone to see the world. However, a new culture can be experienced as close as your neighbor’s house. Because people live in our neighborhood, we assume (see resolution #2) that they are the same as us; but even our neighbors provide opportunities to explore different traditions and ways of thinking. Exploring a new culture will help you to navigate and digest current events, make life decisions, and become a well-rounded global citizen of the world.
Please note that exploring these New Year’s Resolutions will most likely lead you on a roller coaster of feelings and emotions. Not to worry, you’ve made new friends to help you digest this information. You are now open to change, because change is inevitable. You’ll surprise yourself at how much you’ve learned and grown because you’ve set aside expectations and made yourself willing to look at life from a different perspective. This year is going to be unlike any other because that’s how life goes.