Graduation season is shortly upon us. In a few short months, a new batch of mini adults will break loose from the chains of high school and venture into the world outside of what they know. I, myself, am about to embark on my next adventure: graduating college.

Four years and $45,000 later, my hard work will finally pay off and I’ll walk out of here with a degree in communication studies and a whole lot of life lessons…lessons I didn’t even learn in a classroom. Some of these lessons I learned on campus, some were learned across the country, and some were learned halfway around the world. Here are 32 of those lessons:

1. The people you started college with won’t necessarily be the ones you end with. People drift apart and sometimes that isn’t anyone’s fault.

2. Quality of friendship is better than quantity. It’s better to have few true friends than to have a whole bunch of them that you can’t always count on.

3. That quote about “you have to love yourself before anyone else can love you” is a load of BS. Someone will always love you, even when it’s difficult to love yourself.

4. Sometimes you have to travel 4,000 miles to find yourself.

5. You can’t live your life with the door closed. Well…you can. But it won’t be very interesting.

6. Perhaps the best way to learn about the world is to see it.

7. Don’t worry about having everything figured out. Nobody else does.

8. Good grades are good, but your mental health is more important.

9. Empower each other. The only person you’re competing with is yourself.

10. If you need help, ask for it. It may be one of the toughest things you do, but it will pay off.

11. Don’t be reckless with other people’s hearts and feelings.

12. Don’t let others be reckless with yours, either.

13. Learn how to say no. It’s okay.

14. Pay attention to someone’s actions. They say a lot more about their intentions than their words do.

15. Your opinion of someone does not matter.

16. Likewise, someone’s opinion of you does not matter either.

17. How you treat others says more about you than it does about them.

18. What people think of you is none of your business.

19. There is no such thing as “changing for the good.” No matter how you change, there will always be somebody who hates it.

20. Quit worrying about the petty things. Things will be okay in the end.

21. You’re not entitled to anything.

22. Hard work never goes unnoticed, especially if you really put forth the effort.

23. It’s totally okay to watch Netflix in your jammies on a Saturday night.

24. Tell people you love them. Life is unpredictable.

25. Nothing has to be permanent if you don’t want it to be.

26. You can’t make people love you if they don’t want to.

27. Life waits for no one, and neither should you.

28. Appreciate what you have. Others may have it worse and others may have it better, but it won’t change what you have.

29. You can always make more money, but you can’t always go back and live experiences over again.

30. If someone wants to be in your life, they’ll do what they can to put themselves there.

31. Educate yourself on mental health and depression. It may be one of the most important things you do.

32. Don’t waste your time caring about things you don’t want to care about, doing things you don’t want to do, with people you don’t even like.

So here we are…four years later and I’ve got my degree. But the lessons I’ve learned – I’ll carry those with me for the rest of my life, and you can’t put a price on that.

Featured Image via Brandy Melville

Originally published on Unwritten