08/16/2012 11:56 am ET Updated Oct 16, 2012

Freshman Freak Out

Are rolling backpacks cool? Do people still throw the "freshies" into the dumpsters? Which hallways do I avoid? Are there even hallways? Am I still naive? I thought my freshman days were over, but turns out, they're just beginning. It's that nervous routine all over again, only this time, I love it.

That's right, this time around, I'm actually excited to worry about my professors and textbooks. I'm eager to meet strange new people who smell different than me. I'm ready to rev up my social life on weekends and live in the library every other day of the week. I've read quite a few posts about what to do as a freshman in college, and from all those articles and pieces of advice, here is what I've learned:

1. Don't overload yourself. It's the first year, which means things are going to take getting used to. Don't join every sports team, and don't forget to have fun.

2. This isn't high school, but it is. You will no longer feel like the Einstein in your English class; there are so many people who are going to be better and smarter and everything else, but don't compare to them. However, you won't be able to fully avoid the dramatic parts of life.  There will still be those high school moments, especially between girls, that you just have to live with.

3. Don't forget about home. Call Mom and Dad and don't be afraid to still share your life with your siblings. Just because you have your own schedule and life now doesn't mean they aren't a part of it. Remember who is paying for most of your stuff (at least in my case).

4. This is not The Bachelorette. Yes, there will be attractive people, but no, that doesn't mean the first person that holds your hand is the one. Be careful with your love life, and don't rush to change your relationship status on Facebook.

5. Speaking of Facebook, watch out. Don't let seven tabs on your laptop turn into seven sidetracked hours of fun. You won't get any studying done, and you'll regret it later. No Farmville.

6. Be yourself! You will make friends. So many, in fact, that people back home will gaze in wonder at all your new friends on Facebook. Just do exactly what you like to do, be nice and friendly, and the rest will fall into place.

7. Find what you love. If you're worried about choosing a major, choosing a date for Friday night, or choosing what to eat for breakfast, calm down. Do what you love and do it often. Try new things -- you may surprise yourself.

With a week left before departure, I'm getting more anxious and more excited for the new things around this corner. I am leaving so many things behind in order to welcome so many other things into my life. As my parents unload my last box and hug me goodbye, I hope I unload the fear and hug the happiness that's ahead. (That was corny). And maybe there will come a day not too far from now, when I'm laying on my dorm bed surrounded by papers and textbooks and think to myself, "I'm not so scared anymore."

By Jenna Koford, Brigham Young University