Hi Mary Jo,
I believe that you asked a very good question that I am pretty sure most people are thinking about. The best time to start college depends on when you feel that you are ready to start. Sometimes researching schools and selecting a major can be very challenging because there are so many opportunities. If you found a desired major and a college to attend, then you maybe ready to go to college. It's okay if you don't want to start right away but you have to think about if you are prepare mentally to go. Sometimes, others want to take a break to explore other opportunities in addition to figuring out what he/she may want to do. The best thing to do is to ask yourself if you are ready to go through the journey of going to college straight out of high school. College is a fun, rewarding and learning experience and deep down inside you will know when you are ready. As for me, I attended college right after high school because I knew that's what I wanted for myself. I had my mind set to this right away because I created a plan with goals that I wanted to achieve. You can evaluate and create a plan on the expected date/year when you are ready to begin college. Follow your dreams and listen to what your heart tells you to do and you will know for sure the right moment. Just be honest with yourself. I hope this helps you. Wish you all the best in your future journey.
Nija recommends the following next steps:
If you do decide to take a break, do something that will keep your mind active, where you are constantly learning and there's opportunity for growth.
Keep in mind, the longer break you take after high school, the harder it will be to go back.