Healthy Mind

Building confidence in college

It is becoming increasingly difficult to find your true identity as a person due to social media. It is rather confusing to establish your own identity as the person you truly are comes in to conflict with the person you try so desperately to represent on your Facebook page. College, however, can help one increase their confidence in this identity hugely and in a way I never could have anticipated.

As a prospective college student, college itself can be rather a daunting prospect regardless of how confident you are as a person. You are embarking on this entirely new journey that is, for some, as exciting as it is terrifying. For people like me, however, college is a prospect that fills you with nothing but dread and fear. People like me, unfortunately, are those people who find it impossible to take the perfect ‘selfie’ simply because the perfect ’selfie’ does not exist in my world. It exists in everybody else’s world, but just not mine. It is for this reason that I have since given up on attempting to take selfies and instead focused my thoughts on why exactly we all feel it is so essential to in fact be able to take the perfect selfie.

One must first look at social media. Whether we wish to admit it or not, the entire reason for having a Facebook page is to show everyone else just how perfect our lives are compared to theirs. Inevitably, the perfect life we represent so well, so incredibly accurately on our Facebook page is, in reality, no more than a highly exaggerated version of the truth, if we are able to even identify what that is anymore. The truth, it seems, has no real value, no real place any longer in what is a dangerously self-obsessed society.

It is people like me, who just are not in a position to fabricate the truth of my life, in the same way that everyone else is, that sees every single day as one great mountain which is getting steeper and steeper every day. I am struggling more and more, subsequently, to arrive at the top of it. You would think that once you have actually arrived at the top of it you would feel some sense of achievement. The truth is, you do not. You only feel even more drained and exhausted with the idea of not bothering to begin climbing up the mountain in the first place becoming more and more of a reality in your mind, a comforting reality that is.

No one but those who have genuinely experienced it will actually understand the shattering effect that rapidly reducing confidence levels can have on your life. All it takes is one brief glance in the mirror to notice something, anything that proves that you have no place in this society to which you so desperately want to belong. If you don’t look normal, whatever society now deems that to be, you have no worth. No worth whatsoever, regardless of what it is you have to contribute to that very society otherwise.

Since starting college, however, I am glad to say that my outlook has changed, and, it has changed for the better. College is only what you choose to make of it after all. You can either sink or swim and this is a choice you must make for yourself. Whether or not you are going to be successful, should you choose to swim, does not depend at all on your ability or lack thereof to take the perfect selfie but rather your ability to speak up for yourself and engage not only with the course you are doing but also your fellow students so as to create friendships that will last far beyond the duration of your course. You are forced to come out of yourself and in turn discover aspects of your character that you did not even know existed. You realise that everyone is different and, therefore, offer different things to society, all of which are necessary to make that society as diverse and interesting as it is. You have a role in making that society as diverse as it is and it is in this that your true worth lies.

I now realise, since starting college, that my true worth lies in my contribution to the society through which we are all inevitably connected and if others so choose to judge me in my pursuit, for other reasons, it is entirely their loss and certainly not mine.

College is undoubtedly a huge step towards what could be, if you so wish, a very bright and exciting future. The person that decides just how bright and exciting this future is going to be is what college helps you find. So embrace college to the full and in equal measure allow college life to embrace you and as a result the very person that you entered in to college as may in fact be an entirely different to that of the person you leave as.