The start of a new semester means new challenges and struggles. Students often find themselves feeling overwhelmed with coursework and may struggle being away from their families. Other students may face extreme stress when choosing a major.
While these are a few of the challenges college students face, there are many more that students often struggle with.
As a student here at BYU-Idaho, I have found myself in the same predicament. For the first time, I felt buried by the challenges associated with life in college. I’ve had moments where I contemplated dropping out.
I’ve found myself saying, “Wouldn’t it just be easier if I just dropped out of college?” However, the more I sit back and ask myself this question, the more reality sets in — dropping out would make life more difficult in the end.
“You must get all of the education that you possibly can,” said President Gordon B. Hinckley. “Life has become so complex and competitive. You cannot assume that you have entitlements due you. You will be expected to put forth great effort and to use your best talents to make your way to the most wonderful future of which you are capable.”
The prophets time and time again have said education is of great importance. Just like President Hinckley said, education takes great effort. I often have to step back and realize I need to put forth the effort and find ways to tackle the academic challenges in front of me.
I’m not saying that my stress disappeared because I’m working harder. However, while here at BYU-I, I have found a few things that helped me to learn and to grow both mentally and spiritually:
1. Daily prayer and scripture study
The prophets have counseled us to follow the so-called “primary answers” in our daily lives. The peace brought to me while doing these things often helps through the difficult times in my life, especially while at college.
2. Find others to provide support
While away at school, it’s tough to lean on normal support groups such as our family. However, there are still people here willing to help.
Find a professor who has a listening ear, willing to help you as you go along. I have found my roommates to be a great support while enduring my studies. Your ecclesiastical leaders are also here for a reason, use them.
3. Remember you can do it
Step back and look at everything that feels so overwhelming. It often is the perspective of what is in front of you that appears so large.
A friend showed me if you hold a piece of paper right in front of your face all you see is what is on that paper. However, the farther away the paper is from your face, the more you can see around you. Everything the paper blocked is now visible as your perspective changes and expands.
Our college experience is just a few tough years to prepare us for what is ahead. As you go through your studies, remember you can do it.