Saturday, 13 September 2014

Freshers Week Advice

I moved into halls exactly a week ago which means freshers week is nearly over. If you don't know what freshers week is... it's basically a week for all new students to get very drunk and make mistakes, and of course make new friends, get used to university life and start doing things for themselves. 

Don't be nervous or anxious.
Everyone is in the same boat as you, they might just be better at hiding it. I was quite lucky in the fact that I'd already spent a time away from home fending for myself, but most people haven't. Of course it's natural to be scared, it's a huge thing to do! I'm living in halls with 500+ people and for an only child who grew up in a small town its a situation I've never been in before. Be brave and head out!

Be friendly.
I know this is easier said than done but putting on a smile and introducing yourself to people really does make the world of difference. At least say hello to the people in your corridor/flat because you're going to be living with them and they'll be the people you see the most. Introduce yourself to everyone you meet, you never know they might become your best friend! The worst thing you can do is shut yourself away in your room and not talk to anyone.

Be Healthy
Without sounding like your mother, try and stay healthy at university, and especially in freshers week to fend off the dreaded freshers flu. Eating healthily and drinking enough water makes those hangovers end more quickly and mean you're ready to tackle anything life throws at you. I recommend buying loads of vegetables, they're cheaper and tastier than ready meals!, and making a batch of soup or sauce that can be heated up quickly. I made a huge batch of Tomato and Quinoa Soup, which will last me for at least five meals. If you can't cook then learn asap!, or ask a willing cook to make you some healthy meals that can be frozen. All I'm going to say about drinking is know your limits. If you can drink someone under the table then go on but if you know yourself that one drink goes straight to your head then maybe don't do those tequila shots. The most important thing is watch your drink getting made and don't leave it unattended, I have had my drink spiked before and it was not a nice experience and could have ended very badly.

Say yes
In the past week I have avoided many people asking me to join their society, but I have also said yes (what the hell!) and put my name down for things I never even thought of. The Russian society, why the hell not? Attend a beach barbecue even though the tide is coming in, again why the hell not? Saying yes or attending an event doesn't mean you have to join or are under any pressure to go again. You'll meet loads of new interesting people and have fun! Most universities will have a fayre of some sort where you can discover all the weird and wonderful societies. I will most likely join the ones to do with my degree but I also intend on volunteering and doing some charity work so who knows? Go to events as well, if they're anything like the ones I've been to they wont be amazing but who cares? I still had a great time and bonded with my flatmates about how bad they were! 

Enjoy yourself!
The whole point of freshers week is to enjoy yourself before classes start and you have to remember why you're at university. You'll probably have to do a few boring official things during the week to make sure you're enrolled and actually down for the right subjects but after they're done have fun! Go and explore your new home town, battle through the crowds to get all the free stuff and make sure to call your mum to let her know you're still alive. 

Your life is just beginning and you're gonna be great!

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