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Anxiety About Going to College


Going away to college for many is the first real time away from home. This is not an easy thing for some people to do, and can cause much anxiety and worry.

Leaving home to go to school means being in charge. It means being independent. Mom and Dad are not around to cook you breakfast, do your homework, or clean your room. For some, this can be a difficult adjustment. Even those that will be quick to point out "I can't wait to get out of here" may experience anxiety about "leaving the nest".

First, you need to realize that it is certainly okay to feel anxious about your new life. Change is hard, change is scary. But change is what makes us stronger. Feeling some anxiety about going to college is completely normal, to an extent. But if this anxiety becomes excessive, it will negatively impact other aspects of your life.

If the level of anxiety reaches the point that you feel you cannot handle it any more, please seek help. Below are some tips on how to reduce anxiety about going to college.

Be Prepared: Attend a college orientation, meet your future roommate, practice being more "independent" over the summer. There are steps you can take to familiarize yourself with your changing life before it happens. Attending your orientation may sound boring and hokey, but it can greatly reduce whatever anxiety you may have about your first day.

Partialize your concerns: Make a list of all the things that are troubling you about going to college. Talk about them individually and try to think about what you can do to make things better. Look at each concern individually rather than as a whole.

Speak to someone about it: Bouncing your concerns off of someone else can be very enlightening. It helps you to talk out what is bothering you, and you can gain someone else's perspective. Especially if they went through the same thing you did!

You are not alone: There are millions of people going through the same thing you are. Think you are the only one worried about it? Think again. Remember that.

If you feel your anxiety is too much to handle, please seek further help.