Niche Resources
Niche Resources
Niche Resources

Things I Have Learned to Make My Life Easier in College 

My name is Rosalie Anthony, and I am a junior attending Point Park University, Conservatory of Performing Arts in Dance, with a minor in French. Originally, I am from Alabama, so moving 750 miles away from home and adjusting to my college’s culture was difficult. Here are some things I have learned that have helped me balance my schedule and build the foundation for life after college with healthy habits. 

Establishing a Self-Care Routine 

 As a dance major, we are taught that taking care of ourselves is the first step in ensuring success. This includes eating well, exercising, skincare, and taking care of our mental health. I know when I take the time to eat breakfast in the morning and feel prepared for the next day, I will feel more confident in my work. Another example is when I am going grocery shopping. I ensure I schedule enough time to not feel rushed and have a grocery list to help me stay on track with my long-term health goals.

When it comes to social media and electronics, I have discovered I feel more rejuvenated in the morning if I put my phone down at least an hour to two before I go to sleep. Knowing myself well enough on when to take a break is something I am consistently working on. Also, drinking enough water daily helps me feel noticeably better, and having a cute water bottle is a great conversation starter.

Learning How to Ask for Help 

 A hard lesson for me to learn during the first few months of college was how to ask for help. As mentioned before, the culture shock was momentous. I was struggling to balance my studies and find my place in my college community. Something I wish I would have done was go to my professor’s office hours more, or at least emailed them to create a stronger relationship. The counseling office is a great resource I started using during my sophomore year. I had never had therapy before, so this was a new experience for me. Having someone who I could talk to completely confidentially gave me a sense of confidence to be vulnerable and honest with myself about what I was feeling. Seeking help should come before the breaking point because once the damage is done, it can be more difficult to heal. Journaling my feelings and experiences has also helped me solidify and identify my emotions. Moreover, it’s helped to communicate them effectively to work better with others. By focusing and strengthening myself physically, mentally, and spiritually, I can be my best self and better positively impact those around me.

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Starting to Budget and Creating Healthy Spending Habits  

Around the end of my freshman year, I started a spreadsheet detailing all the money I made from the various jobs I had. I knew this would help me around tax season and track my savings. If I had money in my account, I was very tempted to spend it. Therefore, I opened a savings account so I would, hopefully, prevent myself from thinking I had more money to spend than I did. My mom helped me open a credit card, too, to start building some credit. This way, I also had to think of this as an extension of my checking account to not overspend. I have had to take out student loans to pay for school, so remembering to pay on the interest from time to time and that my future self will have to pay those off has helped me think in a money-conscious way. This is definitely not to say abruptly restrict your spending because that would be extreme. This is a great time to start practicing good money habits to prevent getting yourself in a pickle later.

Setting Goals and Prioritizing Them  

I am one of those people who has a problem saying “no,” and I have a big fear of missing out. I recognize this about myself, which is why I have had to discipline myself to create or define my future goals and only do things that will help me get there. This is not to say I do not participate in any hobbies or experiences that do not serve my goals, but if I am busy, some things must take priority. By goal setting, I feel less stressed and driven because it fuels my passion.

Some things you can do now for your future self include creating a strong network and community, joining clubs on campus, educating yourself on current events happening in your industry, taking advantage of the different student support offices, gaining useful life skills, and utilizing all the knowledge we have access to. We have the power to change our future for the better by becoming better people, ourselves.  

 

I hope by sharing my experience, I help others who may be struggling to adjust. I would encourage you to find healthy habits that work for you, because not only are they beneficial mentally, physically, and spiritually, but they will be ones that will comfort and support you throughout your life, even when times get rough.

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Author: Rosalie Anthony

Rosalie is currently attending Point Park University earning her Dance- B.F.A degree with a minor in French. Previously, she attended and graduated from the Alabama School of Fine Arts in dance. She is passionate about learning, teaching and mentoring. In her spare time, she enjoys working out, chatting with friends, and discovering new places to go in Pittsburgh.