Watching your child grow into a young adult is no doubt an exciting process. Your work, however, is not yet done, as you still need to help them adjust to college life. College offers a different lifestyle and environment than your children are used to, so use the five tips outlined below to help them adjust easily.
Help Them Develop Good Habits
Your children are now young adults, so it goes without saying that there is only so much you can do to change them at this point. One of the things you can do is to help them form good habits that will help them feel empowered and stand unbowed by the pressures of college life. Since 1970, the rates of college enrollment have increased 195% in the United States. This means there are many more people with different temperaments and ideas that will interact with your child in college. Helping your young adult form healthy habits will help them settle into a lifestyle that does not harm their future.
As tempting as it may be to hang around and offer support whenever they need it, this is not a good idea. You need to let your young adults form their own thoughts, find solutions to their issues, and grow. Staying close by at all times will only cripple them socially, so while it may hurt you to put a distance between you and them, you need to find a way to do so. Be ready to lend a hand when they encounter issues that overwhelm them and offer advice when they need it, but don’t overstep your bounds.
Your young adult comparing themselves with others in college is a recipe for peer pressure, anxiety, and bad decisions. Before they leave for college, let them know that their strengths are in their unique traits and that they have no reason to feel inadequate next to their counterparts. Let them know that they have what it takes to succeed, and back this by praising good decisions they make so they feel they are in control. With about 4.4 million people suffering injuries from auto accidents annually, make sure that your young adult is not likely to engage in a lifestyle that will put them at risk.
Help Them Deal With Their Emotions
A young adult’s emotions are still developing, so help them navigate them by acknowledging their feelings and helping them develop positive coping mechanisms for the negative ones. Don’t tell them they should not feel the way they feel, but help them find out the root of their feelings so they can deal with them effectively. Also, encourage them to face their emotions rather than hiding from them by spending time on social media or eating junk food, which will only make it take a longer time for them to adjust to a new environment.
Send Them Care Packages
No matter how close to home your young adult attends college, they can still feel lonely and homesick. Help them out by sending care packages in the form of snacks and a loving note to remind them that you care for them. You could also arrange for a special treat for them when they are on break, like going to a movie or having a spa day. Many aestheticians say that it is beneficial for everyone to get a facial treatment once a month, so you can arrange to take your young adult when they are available.
Sending your young adult to college is an experience that can be both fun and terrifying. Don’t let them feel like they are all alone, but give them space to make their own decisions, as this is the only way they will grow into a capable adult.