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5 mistakes I made in my first year in college.

My first year undoubtedly has been fun. I’ve met new individuals, both in school and the local community and the experience has offered a substantial level of insight into how life can generally be experienced. Beyond the folks I’ve met during my first year in college (which is still ongoing at the time of this writing), I recall my first semester being quite haphazard and very draining both emotionally and psychologically.

The first semester in college, from my experience, could possibly be the hardest part of the whole college experience because being in a new environment with flexible rules and no exact path on how to maximize the whole college experience can be challenging.

A few things during this time weren’t exactly in my control, but looking keenly at how it all went, I am convinced that I could have done a lot more to improve my circumstances, and here are 5 mistakes I made that I would correct going forward.

Mistake 1: Doing it all by myself

As soon as I arrived in college (which was later than the actual resumption), I for some reason chose to absorb the experience and figure “everything” out all by myself, and this was possibly a fundamental mistake that would absolutely have made the first few weeks in college bearable and productive.

Choosing to do things all by myself simply just left me in my own little corner, and while I enjoyed that little corner, it simply wasn’t the place to be.

Simple actions like asking questions about things I didn’t understand or asking around to know who to meet for certain issues would have saved me from wasting time on less important tasks and spending time on more important objectives.

Certainly, this is one mistake introverts more than most will possibly fall for and it’s very avoidable. You don’t have to become a social bird and fly into every nest of social circles but learn to reach out for help when you certainly need it. You’ll save time for yourself and possibly allow yourself to enjoy the experience better.

Mistake 2: Not cultivating good friendships (early enough).

This was possibly a second error I made as a result of the first. Keeping to myself made it slightly difficult for me to connect with individuals around me. Although my reality is very different now, and while I’ll judge mine to have happened in the right moment (because obviously at this point I have good friends now) I am conscious of the fact that keeping all to myself and not cultivating friendships would have caused me to experience a huge amount of difficulties than I should have.

I remember falling really ill and who came to my aid? Friends! Sometimes college can be a handful and nutrition can be tough especially when you lack fine cooking skills as I did, I learnt from who? Friends.

so cultivate good friendships and you’ll definitely have a crew to enjoy the college ride together.

Mistake 3: Deliberately choosing to be lazy

This single-handedly hurt my academic performance because in all honesty, if I had bodied my work as I know I could have done, I would have performed better. Would I have ranked in the top ten? Hardly. Would I have had the satisfaction of my hard work? Possibly yes.

Choosing to be lazily manifested in many forms. From choosing not to do assignments and rather copying them in class, to sometimes skipping classes to catch a few hours of sleep and even to not revising the days’ work when I arrive home but rather catching up on a few episodes of some TV show I never saw more than a few times.

I made this mistake and it sucks. And when you fail because you didn’t study at all; That sucks more!

Mistake 4: Not handling my finances properly.

In college, it’ll be foolish to assume that you can live just like the next-door neighbor. Obviously, this is common sense but how easy can anyone fall into the error of doing a thing because the next-door neighbour did it.

A common error in college is overly committing to your finances beyond what you factually know it can handle. Now obviously some can afford certain luxuries than others but we simply can’t all afford the same thing. Don’t be silly to impress anyone and thereby you break your back and bank in the process.

Here’s a simple note to have

“We are all broke college students, and everyone is living on a budget…”

The suffix to that note says

“…and that budget is different for everyone”.

So next time you are tempted to spend outside your budget solely to impress, be aware you are doing yourself a disservice and most importantly aren’t impressing anyone because everyone’s attention span won’t last beyond the moment.

Mistake 5: Not taking my nutrition and health seriously.

This was partly due to laziness and poor cooking skills. Before college, the gym was a thing for me, and not that I was in there to become the next Dwayne Johnson, I just loved the gym, the sweat and the energy (outside my love for MMA) and with nutrition, I could afford a few things back at home than I couldn’t as soon as I got to college.

The choice of intentionally being lazy (mistake 3) spilt into my other affairs and I simply skipped workout after workout until I simply wasn’t interested in it any longer and I wasn’t eating properly, so when I actually got ill, it was bad!

I had to skip several classes and ended up failing a couple of tests which at this point I honestly don’t know how it’ll affect my overall performance but regardless of the outcome I’m confident I know how to fix some issues now.


A lot of possibilities exist in college, you simply have to be willing to find them and experience them. You can choose to just walk through college, or decide you want to make it an experience you’ll cherish for a very long time.

The academics are a good part of it but in all honestly, it’s not the only great part about college.

Perhaps you’ve made some of these mistakes yourself and even more (certainly I made more than I’m sharing in this article) but regardless of it, you can choose to do better, be better as I have decided to do.

And yes! I’ll certainly make some more mistakes over the years in college and even out of it but I’ll be making sure not to repeat the old ones I made in the past.

Until next time. I wish you good luck and a good living. Excelsior!





My College Experience #mce originates from The Confluence University of Science and Technology, Osara. Nigeria and focuses on sharing thoughts about life in college, and practical guides about how to maximize your college experience; ALL BASED ON PERSONAL EXPERIENCES!

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I write about Tech, money and my experience as a college undergrad

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