Moving away for college is basically the pinnacle of learning how to adult.
You're away from the comforts of home, but you're not totally thrown into the real world just yet. There's lots to learn, but you're in the perfect place to learn them.
When you first move away from your hometown, life will be one long roller coaster, but you'll have the time of your life.
Between keeping up a social life and long nights of studying, you'll find some free time for yourself. You'll uncover what's most important to you as you learn about yourself in the process.
When you're able to reflect on what you've discovered in the first few years on your own, these are 12 things you may find yourself realizing.
1. You're More Capable Than You Think
There will be plenty of times when you feel like you can't keep up with the world. Between school, friends, and activities, it can be difficult to find time to relax and have fun.
Keep your head high, and your hopes higher. You have everything you need to thrive at college and beyond; you just have to believe in yourself.
2. Homesickness Hits Hard
At first, you'll be overwhelmed with the awesome new experiences at school. You'll be having the time of your life with new friends in a new place, but once things quiet down, the homesickness will set in.
It may feel like you're completely alone in a foreign world, but it will pass. Your family and friends are just a phone call or even a text away, and before you know it, you'll have a whole new family at college, too.
3. No One Else Is Responsible For You
There will be no one to tell you to go to class or to do your homework. You're the only one responsible for keeping up with your finances, grades, and health.
If you fall behind, it will catch up to you. It's an inevitable truth, but you'll figure it out before you know it.
4. You'll Miss Your Fam's Home Cooking
Fast food is quick, cheap, and everywhere. You may not have time to make your own food, or the money to buy the best of produce.
And let's be real: Finding a restaurant that even comes close to comparing to mom's homemade tomato sauce may very well be impossible.
5. The Little Things Mean A Lot
A hug and a few kind words can go a long way.
Don't overlook the little things in life, especially the positive ones. It's so easy to get caught up in the stress and negativity, but there are tons of little things to appreciate.
6. Naps Work Miracles
No explanation needed.
7. Keep Your Friends Close
The friends you meet in college become your second family.
When times are tough, they'll be the first ones to your rescue. You can count on them for advice, a good laugh, or anything you need.
They'll be your shoulder to cry on, or your plus one to the most epic party of the year. Whatever you need, they'll be there for you.
8. Make Time For Yourself
It's no secret that college will keep you insanely busy, but you have to find a way to make time for yourself. Even if you use this time for a nap or that rejuvenating workout, it's time well spent.
9. Tidy Up Regularly
That one thing you don't put away each day will add up before you know it.
Change your sheets, take out the trash, and take a few minutes to get organized. You'll be surprised how easy it can be to feel like you have your life together when your space is nice and tidy.
10. Budgeting Actually Works
College is expensive, which doesn't help when you're already tight on money.
Keeping up a regular budget plan can help you manage your funds before you make a financial mistake.
11. Don't Forget To Call Home
When you're feeling down, Mom and Dad are only a phone call away.
Better yet, take a few minutes to video chat with your family every week. You'll get to see each other's faces as you talk and catch up on all the excitement.
12. Take Care Of Yourself First
Despite the importance of school, finances, friends, and everything else you'll experience in college, you must always put yourself first.
You may find yourself exhausted, burned out, and stressed out of your mind at times, but you can always step away for a while and recharge.
Count on yourself to know what's best for you.