You know that song “Ooh La La” by The Faces? Well maybe you don’t recognize the song or band name, but I bet you’d realize the lyrics and tune in a heartbeat. The song’s chorus reads like this: “I wish that I knew what I know now, when I was younger.” Imagine if we could somehow bring that song to life and actually go back in time and re-live our lives knowing everything that we know now.
For me, high school and college would be amazing times to go back and re-do with the knowledge I have now. Sure, some of the mistakes or choices I made in the past have helped me in the long run, but there are undoubtedly a few things I wish I knew then. So if I could go back in time and tell my college self some words of wisdom, here’s what they would be.
Grades don’t matter all that much
I stressed so much in college trying to perfect my essays, study enough for finals and keep up my GPA. I never let my schoolwork take over my life- I had plenty of friends and a great social life, but it was always important to me. In high school, you have to do well to get into college. But in college, you don’t have to do well to get a job. The truth is you could have the highest GPA, have graduated from a great school and completed 5 different internships, and you still might have a hard time getting a job that actually pays or is related to your major. Trust me, it happened to me. I wish I hadn’t focused so much on getting A’s and B’s and graduating “Cum Laude” since none of that has helped me land a job or get any amazing opportunities.
Dump your high-school boyfriend
I entered college a taken woman. I started dating someone I went to high school with (and middle school and elementary school as well). We had only been dating for about 3 months when I started college, but had been very close friends for about 10 years prior. Entering college in a relationship has its ups and downs. I saw the jerks that I went to school with and felt so great that I didn’t have to deal with them since I had someone who loved me already. But at the same time, being in a long-distance relationship with someone who is 2+ hours away, doesn’t go to college, and doesn’t have a car wasn’t exactly easy. Fast forward 2 years later to when we broke up. Then months later when we got back together. And then finally during my senior year when I found out he had been cheating. Let’s just say I wish I had been smarter about my relationship decisions back then. Once things start heading south, it’s time to walk away. And not go back.
I was an avid blog reader in college and always wanted to start my own. I also went to school for Communications and took a lot of PR and journalism classes. I didn’t start blogging until a few months after I started my first job post-college. I always wonder if I would have ended up in a different field, city or income level had I started writing earlier on. Since I started blogging, I have had amazing opportunities. I have an extensive writing portfolio, I wrote for a national magazine and I’ve made a small chunk of side income. I would have had all these things during my college years (when I was broke and needed writing samples and experience) instead of post-college. I really regret waiting so long.
What are some things you wish you could have told yourself back in college?