How to make friends and flourish in IIITD
This post mainly caters to my current and future juniors at IIIT Delhi. I’ll try to break down my thought processes and decisions that I have taken in my collegiate life and use my experiences and learnings to strengthen my argument.
These are just my personal opinions and they may or may not work for you.
College life is for Experiments
I cannot agree more with people who use their college life as a means to explore their strengths, their weaknesses, their boundaries, and their limitations. I have carefully used my time here at IIITD to conduct small, subtle but extremely meaningful experiments.
You might ask me, “What kind of experiments did you do? Ha! Probably academic ones. What a Nerd!” Not really! I have experimented with Alcohol, with people, with myself, and yes yes, academics as well.
For starters, I have found out that I prefer Gin to Vodka, and coke to soda as my base. I prefer my drinks to be a little diluted and so on and so forth.
You can experiment with people too, specifically relations and how group dynamism functions. Relationships are extremely volatile, one wrong move and *poof* they are gone. I saw it as an opportunity to improve my people skills. It was rough in the beginning since I was quite shy and reserved when I entered college, but now I have gotten really good at it, being able to fluently converse with people and being able to judge/characterise their personality.
I have tried to change my sleep cycle a lot. Before entering college, I was a morning person. After the first year, I had started sleeping at roughly around 1 AM in the night. This transition was a little troublesome to my parents since they have always seen me go to bed around 11 PM; it took time for them to understand and adjust to this behaviour. I would advise against Polyphasic sleep, you start feeling more and more tired. I have also spent time staying awake for a full day, either because of a project deadline, a competition or just to spend more time with my friends and play DotA 2.
If you have been with me till now, you’ll probably say, “Eh! Okay! Anyone can do that. These aren’t really great achievements. Not that cool, but okay. I see you did some small experiments with your life”. Exactly! I prefer to conduct several small experiments in a relatively controlled environment so that if I mess up,
the damage isn’t gargantuan, and I fail faster and explore more.
Friends — The second family your parents are jealous of
It’s important to have a trust system in the place that you are going to spend your most time at. You need to have people whom you can blindly trust and work alongside while having tons of fun. I found mine in my first year.
Most of us are strangers on the first day of school but by the time we graduate, we all have formed a strong bond, with our experiences forming the material that strengthens it.
Since you are still reading this entry (* Sigh! Don’t you have any deadlines to tend to? *), I think I’ll let you in on a little secret recipe to the perfect set of friends.
The secret lies in the process of experimenting.
Fail faster and explore more
The more the people you talk to, the more you get to know about how varied a personality can be, and soon you start realising how you can categorise (vaguely) a person’s quirks. No, I am not saying talk to them rudely. Have a cordial relationship with everyone — your seniors, your juniors, your batchmates, your professors. Everyone.
After that, it is just a matter of understanding what kind of people do you really like and would be able to live with and associate yourself with for the next 30–40 years, and you are done. :D
It’s important to find “your people” so that you can help yourself grow and help others grow as well. I have learned a lot from my friends (* it’s good to have an open mind to new ideas *), and have also taught a lot to my friends as well (* we should use Splitwise for splitting the bill guys! *).
Well, this is my crazy family at IIITD. Who’s yours?
If you want the TL;DR version, you just got to fail fast, “fake it till you make it”, explore and open your mind to new ideas and experiences.
* cue exit music *