I am going on my second year of college (sophomore). What advice would you give to someone who want to make friends and how do I come out of my comfort zone when it comes to boys , dreams etc….
I’ll be the first to admit that college is hard. We are forced to make decisions on our very own, which can be a blessing and a curse.
The biggest decision we have to make is between acting out of fear or acting out of freedom. Staying in our little boxes or stepping out into the unknown. Each decision leads to a completely different outcome.
And the hard part to realize is that nobody is going to make this decision for us. It’s our job.
I hate to bring in some oldies but goodies, but didn’t Hannah Montana say “Life is what you make it”?
I think she did. And she was right. You go, Hannah.
So what does that look like in friendship? Making friends in college can be really hard, because it’s all on us to go out there and meet people. It might be a shock when we realize nobody is going to come knocking on our dorm room doors to hang with us, because frankly, they don’t know who we are. We have to go first.
And so that’s why my biggest advice in making friends is to be a friend first. Step out of yourself and be the first to help someone in need, spread kindness, or help someone with something tedious. Nine times out of ten, these scenarios most likely turn into friendships.
We need to shift our thinking from “who’s being a friend to me?” to “who am I being a friend to?” The first option will lead to loneliness, but the second will lead to joy.
It’s not easy to give up your comfort to be a friend to someone, but it is so, so worth it. Loving others is so much more life-giving than focusing on ourselves.
You might be thinking, Okay, Ash. I want to be a friend to someone, but who the heck can I be a friend to? The good news is you can always be a friend to somebody, whether it’s someone in your dorm, your roomie, or a classmate. And to find potential besties, it’s best to join clubs and organizations where you can meet others similar to you. Think of clubs that consist of what you like and are interested in, and get your butt to the next club meeting. Even if you have to go alone.
Because better an oops than a what if. If you go and you have a miserable time, at least you could look back and say you did the best you could with that opportunity. But if you sulk in your dorm room with a pint of ice cream and Netflix, you could’ve missed out on a night of meeting future best friends. You’ll never regret stepping out of your comfort zone, and going to meetings alone looks a lot more horrible in our heads than it does in real life.
And if you think you are alone in this, you are so not! I went to club meetings alone too, and while it was scary, it was so worth it. And you have support, because I will be cheering you on the entire way, friend. You got this.
As for stepping out of your comfort zone with boys, I’d say to really know your worth before you get into those zones. So much of a relationship is loving yourself before you step into the shoes of loving another person. You don’t want to bring in any insecurity in the relationship, so that’s why this is the perfect time for you to feel comfortable in your own skin before you put your security in the hands of another person.
And if you are already secure in yourself? That’s amazing. You go, girl. In that case, if the opportunity arises, I truly believe it’s best for the guy to pursue you first. And if you disagree, that’s totally fine. I just personally like to be pursued, and I know a guy likes to compete for something. So if you go up to him first, he might not be as prone to compete for you. But if you let him pursue you first? It might end up differently. I don’t know. Boys are weird.
And if you’re going to take anything away from this, remember to never settle for less. You are so valued and so, so loved. So don’t let anyone treat you otherwise!
If he disrespects you or doesn’t commit to the relationship, you can be brave and shut that door. Life will be sweeter when you stop spending time with men who make you feel less, when you are much more precious than rubies.
And stepping out of that comfort zone could lead you to the man of your dreams, so the bravery is worth it.
As for dreams, don’t feel afraid to chase what you love. You’re young, so what do you have to lose? This is the time to give that dream a go. So many of us fear that our dreams will never happen for us, so we take the safe route. We find an easy job that we know is doable for us and ignore that passion that’s been dying to reach the surface since our childhood.
But I truly believe that passion that is dying to reach the light of the world and bless it for the good of others is there for a reason. Better to try to find a way to make money doing what you love versus just trying to make money. Because if your goal is to make money, you’ll be miserable, for the love of money is the root of all evil. Like Billy Currington would say, “Chase after your dreams don’t chase after the money.” (can I get an amen?)
Focus on how you can use the gifts you have been blessed with and what you love the most, and see what careers those two correlate with. And with passion, the money will come. Whether it’s art, cooking, running a team, numbers, photography, writing, fashion, nature- you name it.
You can choose to run your race. We all have one. We have passions in our lives that are specifically and uniquely set for us to make the world a better place, and we can run with them without falling into crippling doubt that drives us off our path.
And if your dream doesn’t work out? Like I said, better an oops than a what-if. No matter what happens, you’ll end up right where you’re supposed to.
And I promise, you won’t regret following your passions, chasing what you love, respecting yourself, settling for the best, and being a friend to others. You just won’t.
And whenever you doubt yourself, think of this quote I so very love: “‘What if I fall?’ Oh but my darling, what if you fly?” – Erin Hansen.
I truly believe, friend, that you can fly. But that decision is certainly not up to me.
Much love, and best of luck on your sophomore year ventures!