Before coming to college I never gave any thought to who my friends were. If we liked the same music and had fun together that’s all that mattered, but now I’m realizing how important it is to pick your circle carefully.
When I was in high school, my Dad warned me that throughout my 20’s my circle of friends would change a lot. At the time I couldn’t imagine this happening. I was certain that me and all my high school friends would go off to college and be successful together. Well that didn’t happen and I ended up going on that journey alone which I didn’t like. I was sad about this for a while and my Dad would just say, “you’ll make new friends”. Even though I wanted to stay close with my old friends I had to realize that God was pulling me in another direction and sometimes your friends can’t always go with you. It’s okay to take that journey alone because eventually you will meet new people.
Now, at this point in my college career I’m starting to plan for my life after graduation, meaning searching for internships and building my resume. I’m also becoming more involved in organizations I’m passionate about that will also help me in my career. When I first transferred to JSU, I did a lot of experimenting with partying and hanging out. The environment was new to me and I wanted to have fun but after the first semester that got old. Now am I focused on getting the most out of my college experience because you only get one. I don’t want to be sitting stagnant and unemployed years after graduation because I was playing around. With that being said, if your goal is to be focused on success then you must surround yourself with others doing the same. You can’t be an aspiring musician and hang around people who hate music or know nothing about it. Trust me it wont work, I’ve tried it! You’ll just get discouraged and distracted from your dreams.
In order for me to grow I knew I needed to make some changes in my circle. Last Fall I joined three organizations, the Blue & White Flash newspaper, Maddrama Performance Troupe and the National Association of Black Journalists. All of these organizations are related to my major and my career goals. I was very nervous about joining but eager to finally meet people who had the same interests, drive and ambition as me. Joining these organizations was like a breath of fresh air and exactly what I needed. I have met so many new and talented people who are doing great things already. We have become like a family and being around other smart hardworking individuals has pushed me to work harder and to be better!
Now I’m not saying you have to dump all your friends if they’re not future CEO’s and doctors, but I do feel its wise to have several groups of friends. My childhood friends are the ones who I trust the most and will always be close to. Then I have friends I call “turn up buddies”. They are fun to hang out with and turn up, but that’s about it! I also have network friends. These are the people who I conduct business with and who I know are destined for success. These people are usually the star students in your classes and the presidents of campus organizations and clubs.
College is all about networking so if you don’t have any network friends, you better find some, after all success can be contagious too!