In life, especially in college, you will notice that your circle of friends begins to experience changes. Friends that you may have had before college may not be in the picture anymore. You may have kept some of the same friends and just added new ones. Either way, as people begin to change so does the company they keep.
While you are in college, you may start to feel that you are maturing faster than others. Sometimes these others include the people that you are close to. Think about this. It is freshman year. You and your friends are at every party and are in a rebellious stage in your life where anything goes. You have made some mistakes freshman year, so sophomore year you want to improve the way you live your life. You may now be focused on your studies, getting involved on campus, and working on networking with others that have chosen the same path as you. While you are moving forward, you may have that one friend (or maybe a couple) who is stuck in the same spot that you all were in before. You think to yourself, “If I have learned from my mistakes and have made changes in order to have a better college experience, why hasn’t my friend(s) taken this same step?”
It is simple. Everyone lives life at a different pace than others. Everyone learns from their mistakes at a different pace than others. Then, you have people who just simply do not care as much as you do. You may think that just because a person is your “friend,” you both are supposed to go through life on similar paths. However, that is not always the case.
Here is the challenge. Do you remain friends with this person or do you and your friend(s) go your separate ways? It is a lot to think about especially when you have grown so close to a person. The fact is, sometimes you just OUTGROW a person. If you are traveling on a path of progression, then having someone around that is not on that same path will only hinder you in the long run. Either their ways can rub off on you or you will find yourself stressing because you want your friend to have the same opportunities as you. Another thing to think about is how you being associated with this person affects YOU. If this person continues to live a certain way, they will eventually gain a reputation on campus. You have to ask yourself, “Do I want to be known as a party animal or an irresponsible college student just because those are the characteristics of my friend(s)?” If the answer is no, then maybe distancing yourself is best in order to save your reputation. The saying, “Birds of a feather flock together” is very relevant in college.
At the end of the day, who we are friends with is left up to us. If you have a friend that is in a bad spot in their life, maybe you have been put in their life to help them. However, others are just not meant to be in our lives. It is up to you to decipher between the two. Once you have done this, you can then make a decision on who is worth keeping in your life and who is meant to be left behind.
Michaela C., Editor of College Life