College is both an exciting and frightening stage for both parents and children. The best thing we can do as a parent during this time is offer our knowledge and insight on how to take on these exciting years to contribute to the already good head on our children’s shoulders.
These are six lessons to teach your daughter before she leaves for college:
- Never allow anyone into your life that fails to meet your standards
Develop relationships with people who not only have your best interest in mind but theirs as well. Your social circle should be comprised of individuals that positively influence one another, share your values, and will always be friends you can rely on until the end of time. Don’t waste your time on people who are shallow, unmotivated, and unsure of themselves; their energy and attitudes will only bring you down with them.
- Invest time into maintaining your emotional and physical well-being
The most important relationship in this world is the one you have with yourself. Putting time into your emotional and physical well-being is necessary since doing so keeps you grounded and clearheaded, decompresses stress and anxiety levels, and enables you to come back to center with yourself. With that said – love yourself, take more time to be in solitude, and explore all the classes and hobbies that interest you!
- Put in the hard work, effort, and sacrifice into the goals you wish to accomplish
You will never get things done unless you take action. In the words of Manoj Arora, “You will either find a way, or an excuse.” Don’t expect to suddenly wake up one day and have everything fall into place. That attitude breeds a sense of entitlement towards success which prevents you from being motivated to take steps forward or accomplish goals wholeheartedly.
- Trial and error is important, and should not be feared or resisted
No one is perfect, and trying to meet a standard that doesn’t exist is only a waste of time and energy. Embrace the fact that you will make mistakes, fail, and be disappointed – you’re human. What matters at the end of the day is that you get up back up again instead of criticizing yourself for things that already happened or cannot change. See your mistakes as learning experiences instead of setbacks.
- Say “no” to the things that make you uncomfortable
College will open your doors up to new experiences – especially parties, concerts and music festivals. Since attending these events may interest you, please be safe! Say no to drugs such as ecstasy or LSD. They completely warp your sense of reality, thus leaving you in a vulnerable state where you might unintentionally injure yourself or be taken advantage of by another person.
- Plan for the future
When you’re young, you feel like you have all the time in the world. However, while you may feel that way – it is imperative for you to be diligent about mapping out a game plan for your future, save money, and have a general idea of where you want to go with your career. You don’t need to have your entire life figured out by any means because no one can predict all that! Instead, focus on what matters most in adulthood: financial and professional security. These things determine the quality of your life for the next few years.
Because college is an incredible time of independence and exploration of one’s interests and abilities, preparing our daughters to take it on is the best gift we could give them. When your little girl finally leaves for college, you can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that she has the six lessons mentioned above to rely on.