Column: How to survive the sophomore slump

Kailen Locke

Your teachers are piling on the workload. You have three tests and two papers due next week. You feel like you cannot breathe.

Your mom will not leave you alone about your grades. Your bank account is dwindling. You are not even two years in, but it feels like a lifetime.

Does this sound familiar? Well congratulations. You’ve hit the sophomore slump.

Around this time two years ago, you were just getting into your beloved school. And now? You are wondering why you are here. You might have thought to yourself, “I’ll just drop out. I’ll be fine. I’ll become famous for doing something cool. It will be okay.”

Probably somewhere around five to 10 seconds after having this thought you immediately realized that it probably would not be the best idea.

You have so much on your plate – all you want is for your mom to do your laundry and cook while you hide from your responsibilities in your room.

Maybe you’ve skipped a couple of classes to catch up on sleep. Maybe you failed a test. Remember that you are only human. Do not push yourself so hard that you will not be able to recover.

Everyone around you is talking about internships and jobs they already have lined up for the summer. An internship? How can you plan for an internship when you can barely plan what you are going to have for dinner?

Do not let what others are doing effect your life. You are your own person. and you are going to do things your own way. Praise yourself for the little things. Kathy got a job at Teen Vogue? Awesome. You made yourself breakfast and passed your test.

You’re missing the comforts of home. While you have been living in your small college town for over a year now, it is still hard to adapt to this change. One year here compared to 18 at home is nothing. Change is good for you. Remember why you are here. Nothing is ever going to be constant, and it should not be.

Now is a time to find out who you are, and you cannot do that if obstacles are not thrown at you. You become who you are by dealing with those problems. That does not mean it is not difficult. Roommates, classes, clubs – dealing with it all can get a little overwhelming. You do not have to do everything right now. Take a step back.

Pretend you are running track. (I know it is hard to even imagine yourself running, but try.) You come upon 10 hurdles in front of you. Do you try and jump over all of them at once? Of course not. You would fall flat on your face. You are going to jump over one at a time. Apply that to your life. Take it a step at a time.

Stop getting offended by every little thing everyone says. Stop. It is not good for you or for anyone else. Learn to respect other people’s opinions. As college students this is very difficult, but the sooner you learn it, the better. It will help you become a happier, less bitter person.

No, you do not need to change your major. Or sure change it. And then change it again. And change it back a couple of times. Go with what feels right. There is still time. Just remember you want to graduate in four years, so choose wisely.

Here is the best news. The semester is almost over. You have made it this far. You can do it. Only one more semester and you are half way done with college. Unless you are going on to some sort of even higher education, then, well I’m sorry. You still have a while to go.

Realizing graduation is less than three years away might be a terrifying thought. Try and focus on the here and now. Don’t get too caught up on what might happen in the future. The future can be exciting and scary at the same time. It’s good to be a little scared of the future. If your plans don’t scare you a little, maybe you aren’t thinking big enough.

Take a night to yourself. Don’t go to that party that you, deep down, really do not want to go to. Stay home. Put on a movie or blast your favorite music. Dance alone in your room. Forget about everything you have to do. You will feel 10 times better.

It may sound like something your grandma would tell you to do, but make a list. Write out everything you have to do. Seeing it in front of your face is going to help. Stare your problems right in the face, like you would a bull. Although I’m not quite sure how many bulls you’ve started down in your life, but you get the point.

Before you know it, finals are going to be over. Your heart will be happy again. You will no longer feel the need to run into oncoming traffic every three seconds. Go home, beg for some money from your parents, and relax before you get to repeat this all again next semester.


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