One reason the college application is especially daunting and challenging for students has nothing to do with the complexity of the college application process.
Instead, students struggle with vital questions: Do I know myself? What do I truly want? And, how do I ask the questions that will result in the answers that will help me most?
Here are a few tips that I share often with students as an admissions official reviewing thousands of applications a year.
1. Define and practice mindfulness.
2. Define and discuss wellness.
3. Focus on breathing (seriously).
As a disclaimer, these are practices that I enjoy and believe in. They're not for everyone, and everyone is on their own journey! But I believe that everyone can find usefulness in their own way.
What is mindfulness?
Being mindful is being aware of what is happening in that very moment. Practicing mindfulness requires being fully present in whatever activity is being done.
I try to ensure mindfulness by going through each sense and asking myself what does it look like, and how does it feel, taste, smell, sound?
What is wellness?
Being well is recognizing that you have all you need inside of yourself.
This message, while simple, is very motivational for students when they are given hard evidence that they have persevered, found grit, and triumphed.
Life is going to keep throwing things our way.
I recommend breathing, stretching, and practicing affirmations in the mirror.
What do you do, and what do you recommend to your students?