PART 5: Five Ways to Stay Grounded During the College Process
This post concludes the 5 Ways to Stay Grounded During the College Process series with the 5th (and final) way to stay grounded— BRING PEACE.
If you’re just joining me for this final “way” series, make sure to read the rest of the series using the links below.
Despite all that’s going on in the world right now that may leave us feeling a lack of control, we can choose to focus on the things we can control instead.
By now, many of you may be thinking I sound like a broken record about breathing, but I continue to share this message and hope it will impact your life, even in a small way. (And let me be clear, I’m not perfect in this breathing endeavor, but I practice it every day. And the best part is I can begin again every day.)
Intentional breathing is a way to practice self care (which I think we can all agree, we all need a little self care these days). The biggest challenge with bringing peace is finding the discipline to practice it. As I’ve previously mentioned, the behavior we model in our lives influences those around us, whether it be our children, students, friends or family members. It goes along with the belief that whatever we put out into the world, we receive in return.
I encourage you (again) to make intentional breathing a priority in your daily life. If it helps, set a calendar reminder to take 3 breaths periodically throughout your day! Here is a video overview of how to do this exercise.
Another way for bringing peace to the college process is NOT going to Google for answers to questions you may have. This will lead you to many online parent and student forums with A LOT of conflicting (and sometimes inaccurate) information. And in my opinion, it gives students and parents unnecessary anxiety about the process.
Every student’s college process is unique and there isn’t a one size fits all college. It’s important that students stay true to themselves during this process so they find the best fit for them. For example, if a student struggles with managing their stress levels in high school around tests or writing research papers (to the point of it impacting their quality of life), it is likely not wise to look at a top tier college or university with exceptionally high amounts of academic rigor and stress. There are over 4,000 colleges in the U.S. It is 100% possible to find a fantastic postsecondary institution that is right for your child. Becoming successful does not require a degree from a top tier university. I highly recommend reading Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be by Frank Bruni, a bestselling author and a columnist from the New York Times.
It may sound simple, but planning ahead will allow your family to enjoy the process more thoroughly and will allow you to have fun doing so! Trust the process. If you have planned and been intentional about the process, researched and visited colleges, it will work out. (Don’t allow that college chatter to win!)
Stay focused on what is most important for the student through this process, even when the chatter becomes LOUD. Stay the course. Only you know what’s best for your family. As you embark on your college journey, remember the 5 ways to stay grounded: Invite Calm, Minimize the Pressure, Experience Joy, Manage Chaos, and Bring Peace.