By Devin Edgley
College life was extremely challenging, and fun all at the same time. I could have written this article and told you that college was the time when I discovered who I was. I could have said college was where I found my place in the world. The truth is, college for me was whatever I wanted it to be. Initially I went to college to get a degree and to make friends. I did that, and some. The most valuable thing I took away from college can be said in one simple phrase.
You can’t study at a toga party.
College life was the ultimate test on juggling your social life with academics. My carefully thought out strategy on studying slowly turned into socializing, and planning events for that night. I would sit and chat an hour away at the coffee shop, or the Library before I looked up at the clock and realized I had half an hour until my next class. What happened to my study time? Well, my school work laid out in front of me, still wasn’t enough to make me study. I mean, geez, I had more important things to think about, like what was I going to wear at the party, or which beer pong partner assured me success. Before I knew it, Algebra and French, had taken a back seat. Social media, and house parties were my top priority.
I had to find a balance. It didn’t matter that I went to the Library or a coffee shop, where everyone else seemed to be productive. I had to realize, that studying was part of my routine, not just showing up with the intention of studying.
So I slowly rearranged my life. I found group studying was actually productive for me, but only after I had spent time gathering my notes, and studying alone. I would bring beneficial notes to compare after studying in private. I stopped spending all of my time talking about a kegger, or 80’s night while I was at study group. I did well on my exams, and my homework was…wait for it… completely finished! Once I was able to balance, when to study, and when to be social; both areas of my life improved. I had friends that wanted to study with me, because I turned out to be a smart person. I also wasn’t stressed out when I did go to parties, because I knew I had a set plan for my study habits.
You can try to study while you’re getting ready for a party, you can even try making drinking games out of flashcards. I am only sharing with you what I learned, and what proved to be valuable. I made a study habit, separate from being social, and I was able to succeed as a student. It was easy to lose sight of what was truly important when I attended college. I guarantee you, the toga I was in wouldn’t be as cool now, if I hadn’t achieved the goal I was seeking in the first place.