When we start college, the thought of spending three years with the same set of people doesn’t hit us at once. But, inevitably, these people become an extension of who we are.
College hands us innumerable lectures, assignments, exams and anxiety the moment we become part of the higher-education group. So much so, that in keeping up with the day’s activities, we begin to lose sight of what is important in life- association. But one highly underrated gift that college gives us would be friends, joining us in this happy-sad-journey.
It is often joked about that the people we sit with on the first day of college tend to become our best friends. Funny as it may seem, it does contain a certain amount of truth in it, if not completely veritable. This might be the reason why, despite cliched cliques, every person in a group of friends has their own unique personality, and is allowed to maintain that. Here, we learn an enormously important life skill, which is tolerance.
“In college, we meet people from diverse backgrounds, having different opinions,” says Alfisha Sabri, a first-year English honours student of Maitreyi College. “Being mature and respecting the views of others, whilst sticking to our own beliefs, is what makes strong friendship bonds that pass the test of time.” What happens here is that we, unknowingly, prepare ourselves for the wider spectrum of people we will have to interact with as we proceed further on in life. Mutual respect is something that can never be compromised on.
In friendship, there is an unsaid rule of agreeing to disagree. Even though we may not accept our friends’ point of view, doesn’t make them (or you) a bad person; rather, they are individual choices which everyone makes.
If it is friends that we want, we have to ensure that we are a friend to them in the first place. From sharing notes to being there in times of crisis, we must play our part in the friendship because only then can we expect something in return. This is similar to being a safe space for our friends, in an environment that may get extremely inhospitable at times. We should be that somebody they can rely on, so when we need a hand or a heart, they will be sitting next to us.
College is a time when we hardly have free time on our hands. There is always so much to get done in what seems like forever-diminishing-time and everyone is pushing themselves to a point of mental and physical exhaustion. As friends, we must ensure that we do spend time outside of the classrooms as well, and not let go of the tradition of ‘hanging out’. Contrary to this, we must be understanding and appreciative of our friends’ efforts to do their very best and not mope over the lack of ceremonious gatherings because they, too, run on a very tight schedule.
Having said all of this, I do believe that laughter, harmless witticisms and getting into moderate trouble seal the bond of friendship, and it is these mildly scandalous incidents that serve as amazing anecdotes years down the line!
Feature Image credits: Sneha Garg