The thoughts of going to university can sometimes make us very nervous. This is because a lot of things about our lifestyle would change, from meeting a lot of new people to living outside your parent’s house and every other thing that comes with your new academic adventure.
Furthermore, always have in mind that it is normal to feel this way, and you don’t have to worry yourself too much because your college years experience would probably turn out to be some of your best experiences. You’ll be surprised they’ll probably go very quickly.
Tips for coping and surviving the university
Now that you have this at the back of your mind, here are some things you can do to help you stay positive and worry less about surviving in the university.
1. Explore your campus:
It would help a lot if you get to know your campus, especially if you study on a big campus. However, it might take some time to get acquainted with your new surrounding.
You can start by getting to know the main buildings such as the classes you’ll be having lectures, computer labs, the library, and café. You can also grab a map from the school website if there’s one, that might also help to get you started!
2. Plan out a routine:
Immediately you get access to your lecture timetable, the next thing to do is to start planning what you want to use the rest of your time for. If you have any specific society in mind, that you would like to join, the university offers you the time and opportunity to engage in a variety of things.
It could be related to sports, music, or lots of other things that may be of interest to you. You may also want to start exercising, this is an excellent way to use your time, and it also helps to keep your mental health in check.
Extracurricular activities are a great way to not only engage in something that can make you feel satisfied, but they also give you some valuable experience and time to take care of yourself. It is also an avenue to make friends who share the same interests as you and are willing to pursue something alongside academic work.
3. Search for guidance and counselling services in your university:
Nowadays universities are proactive about the mental health of their students, that is why support office, where you can access counselling, financial advice, and academic assistance are created.
Don’t ever be ashamed to ask for help, If you are receiving mental health support, or you feel there is a need to seek advice, don’t hesitate to contact them. You can also find some fantastic voluntary organisations that organise support programs and sessions that help with mental health.
4. Stick to a budget:
As you go through your day on campus, you’ll probably spend more time socialising with people who might add additional expenses, such as buying lunch for you and friends or paying for transportation. This makes having a budget very important.
You can start by preparing your own lunch from home; even if it’s once in two days, this will help save a little more cash for other expenses. If you are worried about how budgeting would affect your life socially, you can go for other cheaper alternatives when choosing activities; you can have a picnic with friends instead of a huge lunch at a very expensive restaurant. Always have your student card with you; it may come handy at cinemas, sporting games, and some other stores.
5. Eat well and stay healthy:
Academic activities can be very stressful, you may also be going out very often, or working irregular hours and sleeping less. With so much to do, you may find it hard to keep up your regular healthy eating and fitness routine.
Nevertheless, you can make time to eat well and exercise; this is definitely possible if you plan out a routine and if you’re on a budget. If you’re finding it challenging to maintain your exercise schedule, you can search for and join gyms on campus; there might even be exercise classes organised by voluntary groups on campus. So there really should be no excuse to stop taking your fruit and veggie or stop exercising.
6. Make your studies your utmost priority:
If you are one of those students who combine their education with work and social life, it may be difficult for you to handle and you may start to feel ‘burnt out’.
Always remember that the most important thing is your studies, ensure to allocate enough time to reading, attending classes, and writing up assignments. Try not to work too much, at least not more than 20 hours per week, have it in mind that you may up your shifts during the holidays, also don’t allow your social life get in the way of your studies.
7. Make sure you get enough sleep:
It may be hard to achieve, with all the academic workload and other activities. Nevertheless, if the right things are done at the right time, there would always be time to sleep well, try to avoid procrastinating and shifting activities meant to be done during the day to night time.
Make sure you prepare a comfortable place for your sleep before bedtime, eat something that isn’t too heavy, and don’t go to bed just immediately after dinner.
Having enough sleep is very important, especially after a stressful day, it doesn’t only relax the body; it also helps to relax the mind. It’s also advisable to have enough sleep after studying before a test or exam.
Here is a bonus tip for you, never be too hard on yourself, your mental health should be your number one priority at all times, the university experience is full of good times and bad times, and it might take a while to get settled at first. Study well, but don’t expect to get perfect grades right away and try to enjoy your time at university and grab every bit of education you can get during this short period of your life.