8 things to know about university

So it may be that time of the year when you’re deep in exams and stressed out to the max about the thought of what university you’ll be going to and what it will be like. Like I had this whole image in my head about university and it was pretty much based on american tv shows, so you can imagine my disappointment when I realised frat parties and sororities weren’t really a thing. So here are 8 things to get you ready for university:

You’re going to be referencing A LOT

This is a word every student hates hearing. It is the devil of words and means you’ll be spending 70% of your essay time referencing. Referencing is a BIG part of university; more than it ever has been. Your grades rely heavily on the quality of your referencing so I wouldn’t rush it even though it is increeeeeedibly boring.

You’re going to have no money 

Starting university is going to bring in a lot of extra costs; varying from study books, to rent, to bills, to the retail therapy you’re going to need if you leave all your work to the last minute (pfft who even does that now, right). So unless you’re planning on living off biscuits and tinned food; you’re more than likely to have to get a job.

You’ll be living without parents (probably) 

You’re probably thinking waaheeeey finally!! but it’s a lot harder than we all imagine. Like who’s doing my laundry? Who’s doing all the food shopping? Is ANYONE going to wake me up when I snooze my alarm ten times???? This gets a lot easier a few weeks in when you start becoming more independent and comfortable, but the freedom is amazing.

Your friends ‘for life’ may not be the same ones you met in freshers 

Obviously, freshers is there for you to make some new friends, as well as getting so drunk that you won’t remember anything; but don’t feel like you have to stay with the friends you made that week for the rest of your life at uni. You won’t get on with everyone and you’ll meet new people in lessons and societies etc.

You will question whether to quit

Some time in your uni experience you will get to that point of ‘I can’t do this’ and it happens to almost everyone. You will want to quit and live life on the edge, but it’s likely to just be homesickness (which is perfectly fine; it happens to the best of us). Sometimes it’s just the fact that you have to pay for printing even though you’re spending £9000 on your course. If you don’t like your course, you have the option to change it and if you’re really not feeling university after a couple months then maybe it’s not for you, but it doesn’t mean there are no other options.

You’ll realise boys AND GIRLS are sometimes horrible to live with

I feel like everyone thinks it’s just boys that are disgusting to share a flat with (I used to) but to be honest, I’ve met a few girls who obviously have never heard about cleanliness. There have been times where I’ve not even been able to go to the kitchen because it was so dirty. Maybe I have high standards but who really wants to live like a pig?? haha

You can wear pyjamas EVERYWHERE

No joke. One of the best things about uni is that you can where whatever you want. There is no ‘popularity’ at uni like there is at school; people honestly don’t care what you are wearing because, more often than not, they also want to wear comfy clothes to lectures. Plus it makes it a lot easier to wake up 10 minutes before your lecture starts when you don’t have to plan an outfit.

Unidays will become your bestfriends 

You’re going to need student discount more than ever because everything and I mean EVERYTHING is expensive. For example, did you know that shampoo and conditioner can cost like £5 each; sorry???? I would use student discount on everything that you can; you’ll get some great deals on that and it would really help with budgeting if you’re obsessed with buying clothes.

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#Goals

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January’s over and it’s already February which means that I need to start getting my life sorted. I feel like January was just my trial month and now it’s time to actually do something. I recently discovered that I am already halfway through my degree which is absolutely terrifying and I’m still winging my life (my advice: don’t).

Basically, I want to make sure that I start doing certain things this year – as a way of starting to feel like I’m actually 19 going on 20 rather than 10 years old. These include…

Starting assignments early: 

I feel like this is every student’s goal but never actually happens? I’ve probably been saying this for years and I can, for a fact, say that I continue to leave my assignments until the day before and then wonder why I am so stressed. But I’ll give it a go anyway! Maybe I just need to buy some more notebooks and stationary to get me in the productive mood.

Actually finding a placement: 

Why is it so hard to find internships that require no previous experience? Like isn’t that the point of internships in the first place. Am I the only one with this problem – it seems like everyone else has like 10 years experience when they’re only 19. At this rate, I’ll be lucky to find a summer internship and it’ll probably entail so many rejection letters haha.

Being healthy:

Also, another goal everyone is probably thinking but it’s true. We all want that summer body to show off and after months of eating whatever I wanted, it’s about time I did something about it. I want to start drinking green tea; people seem to like it? Idk, is it just one of those things people drink because it’s healthy or does it actually taste nice? My main problem is actually cooking healthy meals and avoiding snacking but it’s so hard when I’m ‘working’. I’ll start running or something…promise.

Having more clothes: 

Is this allowed to be a goal? I want a new wardrobe (with all the money I seem to think I have); I feel like I need a new look – I tried going blonde for a couple months and now I’m bored and new clothes/accessories are a must (my dad would disagree, but when do I ever listen).

Blogging more and more:

Believe it or not, I’ve had this blog for a couple years now and I’ve only got about 5/6 posts which is awful for someone who wants to write in the future. I always find myself hating my writing and thinking no one will like it (which in some cases is true and others is not) but I’ve kind of realised that this blog is more for me – it’s to practice my writing and show future employers what I’m capable of and what I’m like in general. So, I’m aiming to write one blog post per week – more if I have enough ideas.

Start living life:

It’s such a cliché but it’s true. I want to save up and go on so many holidays (which kinda clashes with my ‘new wardrobe’ goal). I want to say I’ve done that and I’ve been there. If anything, it’ll give me more to write about and hopefully opportunities to work abroad. Basically, I want to start having enough; I’ll be 20 soon (help me) and your 20s are your fun years, right?

Kickstart your healthy lifestyle!

More often than not we spend a couple days trying to be healthy and then give up because 1) we don’t see any changes in our bodies and 2) it’s just too much work to stay away from those heavenly sweets. The problem is that this mindset means we will never see any changes as we’re just not patient enough. To help you kick-start your healthy lifestyle now, here are … things you can do.

Walk all day, everyday:

Okay so obviously not all day, but seriously start walking to and from places; be it university, work or shops. While walking doesn’t seem like a lot of exercise, it still has major health benefits by getting you out in the fresh air and moving around.

Start eating healthier portions:

Everyone loves food, it’s impossible not to, but eating large portions every meal and every day is horrendously bad for you. If your eyes are too big for your stomach, then invest in some smaller plates to trick your brain into thinking you’re eating a lot.

Don’t snack 24/7:

This, I know, is especially hard for students as all we want to do is snack to get us through the endless work, but try and control yourself. You will definitely regret those years snacking on chocolate and sweets so stop now; drinking water fills you up and if you need something to nibble on try healthier options such as mixed nuts, plain yoghurt and carrots.

Make dinner from scratch:

Sounds like a hassle but some people do not know how much sugar goes in ready-made meals or even store bought sauces. Studies show that “some supermarket ready meals contain almost twice as much sugar as a can of Coca-Cola”. Why eat all that extra sugar when making spaghetti Bolognese from scratch is a lot healthier and tastier? The extra time cooking will be totally worth it in the end.

Drink lots of water:

Stay away from those sugary drinks – they are absolutely not helping anyone! Fruit juice may seem like the better option; however, despite having more nutrients “it contains as much sugar…and calories as soft drinks.” Just drink lots, and I mean lots, of water and if you don’t like the taste of water, try adding a bit of lemon.

EAT BREAKFAST:

How you’re not hungry after 8 hours of not eating is insane. Dr Walji states that “if you skip breakfast, your body is operating at a slower pace” and eating a good breakfast “means you’re less likely to overeat at other meals.” Eating a well-balanced breakfast kicks off your metabolism for the day.