12 Ways to Distract Yourself While Waiting for College Decisions


After consulting teachers for recommendations, filing the FAFSA, researching college admissions procedural advice, and refining your Common App or college-specific application, all that is left to do is wait.  The reality is that the result has moved beyond your control and in the hands of the admissions decisions committee, and the weeks-long waiting period can the hardest part of it all.

Given the fact that I am currently going through the college admissions process myself, I have compiled a short list of mindful things that I do, and affirmations that I keep, to ease my nerves during the selection process.  Hopefully, you will see these motivations personally fit upon awaiting your admissions decisions.

12 Ways to Keep Yourself Busy While Waiting for College Decisions

  1. Remind yourself that it is not the end of the world.
    • Often, we may find ourselves overwhelmed with the over exaggerated notion of failure if we are not admitted into a specific university of choice. However, the label of a university cannot affirm nor defer your innermost worth.
  2. Handwrite a list of positive affirmations and post them around your room.
    • I prefer to reaffirm myself of positive characteristics, as I believe it digs deeper than, and ultimately influences, compliments about physicality.
  3. Create something, whether it be a painting, a journal entry, or a music mix.
  4. Bake yourself a batch of cookies.
  5. Remind yourself that everything happens for a reason.
    • No matter the outcome of the situation, it is important to remember that you are not always given the results that you want, but rather, the ones that you need.
  6. Give yourself a spa treatment.
    • Physical self-care is just as important as spiritual self-care. Spa care can range anywhere from taking a bath to painting your nails.
  7. Build a play fortress. Gather flashlights and read under it.
    • There is something pleasurably nostalgic about emulating a favorite activity from your childhood.
  8. Take a spontaneous walk with no destination.
    • In a situation as demanding as college admissions, it is necessary to do something for yourself that does not involve intricate planning.
  9. Talk with a friend or relative that you haven’t spoken to for a while.
    • Whether you ask the person specifically for advice pertaining to college admissions, or you’re catching up on life’s adventures, you will gain a new perspective from someone you haven’t heard from in a while.
  10. Have a solo dance party to your favorite music playlist.
    • This is the best release after finishing a college supplemental essay.
  11. Dress elaborately for the sake of dressing elaborately.
    • I truly believe in gained self-confidence through the expression of outerwear. If you enjoy doing your makeup, I would suggest doing your makeup fancily for a day, it is simply another esteem-boosting tactic.
  12. Watch something on Netflix that you wouldn’t normally.
    • I find independent and international films to be particularly intriguing; you can gain new insight and it feels as though you traveled to a completely foreign place, all while sitting in your room.
    • There are great instructional meditation videos available online for first-time meditators. My personal favorite instructor is Jazz of Life By Jazz.  I would also recommend reaching out to your local meditation classes or camps if you prefer meditating in a group setting.


All in all, keep busy.  Your life does not end the moment that you apply for colleges and restart when you attend it, so you should value every allot of time during this process towards self-improvement and productivity.  The college admissions process is an exciting, unparalleled once-in-a-lifetime event.  There is no need to worry, you will end up right where you need to be.