So, you’ve moved all your things into halls, you’ve met the people you’re going to be living with for a year and you’ve enrolled on your course. Now what?
Nowadays, when you tell people that you’re off to university, you get the reaction, “these are going to be the best years of your life”. No pressure, eh?
Now in my third year, I love being at university. I’ve made good friends, I love my course and I love the city. But I think if I didn’t have the huge expectation that I absolutely have to have the most fun I can possibly have for the entire three years, then first year would have been so much easier.
After recovering from freshers week and getting over the excitement of being in a new place with new people, it started to sink in that this was real and I was here. I constantly felt that I had to be going out and socialising and I felt guilty if I wanted to stay in. Some people may genuinely like going out every single night, but I didn’t and there was no logical reason for me to feel bad about it, but I did. There is nothing worse than feeling like you have to do something, and enjoy it, even if you really don’t want to. And if you pluck up the courage to say no, and you do stay in, you spent the your time worrying about what you’re missing out on and just feeling miserable for the evening instead.
This romantic idea that people have of university where you live an amazing hedonistic lifestyle and don’t care about anything but partying for three years gives students a massive ideal to live up to, and when it doesn’t, then it can leave you feeling really low.
I think the best advice for everybody that’s just starting university is that it’s okay to not force yourself to go out at every single opportunity. It is perfectly acceptable to want to sit in and watch the bake off with some biscuits and a cup of tea. And if you feel homesick and want to go see your mum for a cuddle, just go! Nobody that is worthwhile knowing is going to judge you for it, and if you don’t go on one night out because you’re tired and want an early night, are you really going to miss out on that much?
Look after yourself and don’t compare what you’re doing to what your friends are posting on Instagram, they may not be having the amazing time that they’re trying to show. Enjoy uni, it is a truly unforgettable experience, but do it in your own way and you’ll enjoy it so much more.
What was your experience of freshers?