You are brave to transfer. It can be tough going through it, but here are some helpful tips to ease the transition.
Transferring is easier said than done. Despite your blueprints and color coated notes, no preparation can prepare you for that feeling of walking into an unfamiliar dining hall, alone…again. Your mind is screaming at you that this is supposed to be a freshmen problem and you debate whether you’re actually that hungry. This is one of those mental shifts that take time, but is required to accept when starting a new school. It’s okay that this feels like a freshmen problem and seems totally unfair. Let’s face it, it stinks that you have to do this all again. But also, it kinda rocks because you already know how college works! This is the first step to coming to terms with the fact that the first school didn’t work out as planned.It’s ok that the first environment wasn’t the perfect fit but remember it’s not a “you” problem. In hindsight (which they say is 20/20), the “why” doesn’t matter. What matters when transferring is that you needed to make a change for you. In order to cope, I started to (literally) tell myself “Okay, I acknowledge that I feel weird/uncomfy/lonely/a bit crazy, but I CAN’T focus on that. I need to focus on doing ME.” It sounds somewhat silly, but over time, this will help. If you’re thinking of transferring, remind yourself that YOU are NOT the problem.
Takeaway: Accept that the first school didn’t work out but that you were not the problem. This will be hard (it’s supposed to be ).
Lean on your support system
This is the time to lean on your close family and friends. I was fortunate that my sister and some of my friends were attending school in Boston, the city where I transferred to my new college. More times than I would like to admit, I forced myself to reach out. A quick “Hey, I’m having a tough time. Can I hang out with you and your friends this weekend?” quickly turned my weekends around. Remember, if they’re a good friend, they want to know how you’re feeling.
Takeaway: Having to experience all these emotions is exhausting; being able to just breathe is sometimes all it takes to regroup. We all need reassurance at times and your loved ones will be there to give it to you.
Put yourself out there
This is THE tip when transferring. Starting a new school is a do-over. I would shout the college cliché from the rooftops if I could: You can be whoever you want to be. Ask a classmate to hangout, sit with new girls at the dhall, take that exciting class you may like. Most importantly, try new things.Go to a variety of club meetings whether you’re wicked interested or just think you could meet awesome people that way. That was one of things I missed out on at my first school and I wasn’t going to let that happen again. My first club meeting was for the school magazine, but I wasn’t feeling it, so I tried some more including one that gave me an opportunity to attend a Harvard Women in Business Conference (!!). They say third times a charm and HerCampus at Simmons turned into one of my best decisions of the year. I thought one of the girls in the club was cool, so I gave it a chance. BEST. DECISION. EVER. I’ve been able to make incredible friends, get free stuff, and discover that I want to blog. To top it all off, I am now VP of the communications club.
Takeaway: Try new things and meet new people because you will be pleasantly surprised by the outcomes. You won’t like all the new clubs you try or all the new people you meet, but eventually you’ll be in the group text of your ~dreams~.
Find a Hobby
Trying new things can be stressful and discouraging. Some days, you will need a you day. The key is to balance that Netflix binge with productivity. We don’t have time to become stressed about wasting time, which inevitably leads to stressing about the fact that you’re stressing. This is supposed to be relaxing. Stressing ≠ self-careYou will want (need) something to distract you from your own thoughts. Yoga & drawing are great outlets. Core Power Yoga (eventually) became the best distraction (once you overcome the fact that downward facing dog isn’t as easy as it looks & child’s pose may be your new BFF). After fully committing yourself, it can become a quiet place that you really enjoy. Drawing is also something to do in your spare time. It produces an end result and you feel accomplished.
Takeaway: You need an outlet (that’s not electrical) to not go crazy. Simple as that. Don’t get down on yourself if your first semester feels way less exciting than everyone else. Sure, your insta game may be lacking in over the top #goals pics but you’ll get there. Overcoming your own imagination of what your life is supposed to look like will be the game changer. All you can do is focus on you and trust me, you made the right decision. There really is no going back so why not just work on moving forward?!