7 Things You Learn Being Sober in College

Sober College Students walking through campus

Friday, August 23, 2019 | By Cooper Samp

While college is a time to learn the necessary skills for your career, almost everyone starts to learn more about themselves than anything they learn in the classroom. College is a tie when you become independent for the first time. You make your own choices of what you eat, how you spend your money and time, and who you hang out with. College not only teaches you what you want to be but who you want to be. 

If you are not learning in college than you might want to consider your current situation. You are most likely spending thousands of dollars to take classes and live on campus; not to mention all the hard work and dedication it took for you to be on this campus. Too many students throw away all their hard work and money because they focus on the social aspect of college instead of the primary reason they are there: education. 

This doesn’t mean that your college experience won’t be fun without drinking and partying, actually just the opposite, you will find your time spent more meaningful. When you have fun naturally without alcohol or drugs, you not only remember these moments longer, but they feel more genuine. It might sound improbable that you can have more genuine fun without alcohol or drugs, but it’s just one of those things you’ll have to experience yourself to truly understand. 

Think about it like this; what sounds more fun, reading a book or watching TV? Most of us would probably say watching TV, but what some people discover is that many people are happier when they choose the book. Why is this? Well, it all comes down to immediate satisfaction vs. delayed gratification. When you read the book, while it might not be as instantly fun as watching your favorite show, the benefits like the knowledge you gain from reading will extend far beyond the time you stop reading. 

1. How to build your own confidence.

confident woman by the Gulf Coast ocean.

Being confident is about embracing uncomfortable moments and coming out the other side with experience. Through these experiences, you become more comfortable with these once intimidating situations and this grows your confidence. 

For instance, asking someone out on a date seemed incredibly intimidating in grade school. Over time, when you start to personally engage with people more and more, the jitters wear off and you find yourself going out of your way to make these moments happen.

Confidence is all about embracing the uncomfortable because not only are you proud of yourself for taking the leap, but you learn from experience how to handle these situations next time. Many students in college try to mask these uncomfortable situations with alcohol and drugs. While alcohol can take the edge off, but if a person relies on alcohol or drugs for every uncomfortable situation, they will lose the natural ability to gain confidence

2. How to meet people.

Meeting new people is easy, but most of us are intimidated by it. We fear judgment or lack of acceptance, so instead of tying we drown our inhibitions in alcohol to become more outgoing. The great thing about being sober during these interactions is that we can practice and fine-tune our social skills every day, not just when we are partying and drinking. This way you’ll end up meeting more people in everyday situations. 

3. How how much money you save

Wasting Money

The average college students spend $75 each week on booze, so if you do the math, that’s more than $1,000 per semester! This doesn’t include money for the cover at the bar or Ubering to and from which can be just as much sometimes. Think of all the things you’d be able to do with an extra $1,000 per semester! You could pay off a piece of your student loan or even take a fancy vacation. 

4. Learn sustainable ways to loosen up/relax.

College is a stressful time for most students – they not only have the pressure to succeed academically but also to work a job and find the time to be social. Learning to juggle all of these different aspects can be challenging and stressful and some students turn to alcohol and drugs to either alleviate their stress or help them academically or socially. When you take on these challenges sober, while it might be difficult at first, you will gain the necessary skills and techniques to manage and cope with these feelings in a healthy and effective manner. 

5. Who your real friends are.

Group of People connecting to each other
Young happy people stacking hands outdoor – Diverse culture students celebrating together – Youth lifestyle, university, relationship, human resorces, work and friendship concept – Focus on hands

When you embark on a sober lifestyle, many of the activities you once used to do for fun like drinking and partying will not be a part of your life anymore. You might start to find out you spend time with certain individuals less because much of the time you spent with them revolved around partying and drinking. This does not necessarily mean they can’t be your friends, but there will be others who will stop being your friend based on the fact that you choose not to drink and/or use drugs. A friendship solely based on these behaviors is not a true friendship. A friend shouldn’t care what life choices you make and a healthy friendship should be one that encourages healthy life choices like sobriety. 

6. How to not care.

The more you learn how to have fun without drinking the more you learn how to be yourself. being independent without the need of alcohol to make you social or brave gives you confidence. This confidence helps you adopt an attitude where you don’t need other people’s approval. This ironically makes you more likable. You learn to love yourself for who you are, and this is the key to happiness and therefore your sobriety. You spend all of your time with yourself, so love that person and do what makes you happy. 

7. How to take responsibility.

We’ve all done something stupid we regret later. At least when we do these things sober we can own up to it, learn from it and improve for next time. Unfortunately, we rarely own up to our actions while drinking or abusing drugs because these events are often not remembered the next day or the events are often warped. By experiencing our mistakes in a sober  

You will come to find out that the responsibility you take towards your actions will shape who you are as a person. People will begin to respect you not for your actions, but how you deal with them. We all make mistakes, but the true test of maturity is how we handle and own up to those mistakes.

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