The Beauty of Reaching Out
by Jonathan Wong
For many, starting college can be a daunting experience. Leaving the comfort of your friends and family is never easy and you will be forced to face obstacles you have never encountered. You may even struggle to create meaningful friendships. However, there is beauty in the unknown and true growth can only come from a place of discomfort.
Manage Your Mindset
As a first-generation college student moving from New York to California to attend the University of Southern California, I was terrified of the new life that was awaiting me. After an entire summer of existential dread, figuring out my career path, and uncertainty about my future, I came to the realization that I am in complete control of my future. The friends I make, the person I become, and the opportunities I seize are all a result of my own agency. I quickly turned my fear into genuine excitement.
Work As If I Could Never Fail
I wrote down a list of my goals and envisioned a different version of myself. A version of myself that could not fear, could not budge, and could not fail. I committed myself to dream big and work as if I could never fail. Each day, I pushed myself out of my comfort zone where I quickly discovered my passions for self-improvement and the human experience. The purpose of this blog is to urge students like yourself to find discomfort and find love and beauty in the people around you. I began valuing meaningful conversation and committing myself to understand and learning the experiences of others. I made amazing and inspiring friends along the way and opened doors to opportunities I could never imagine. At USC, I found a community and a home.
Outside of academics, the friendships you create at college will last you for the rest of your life and teach you things about yourself and the world you wouldn’t learn otherwise. Do not be afraid to chase diverse and unique perspectives and truly experience everything the world has to offer. Surround yourself with inspiring people and soon enough there will be nothing keeping you from becoming incredible. I believe every conversation, every failure, and every opportunity is a learning experience and I implore all of you to open your ears and your hearts to those around you.
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