What to expect from your first year at University


I have wanted to write this post the whole summer but everytime I started writing it, I deleted the words because it didn’t seem to make any sense.

So here I am, trying to write this university post (again) and I want to say first of all, the first year at University will be different for everyone. I know this is such an obvious ‘’disclaimer’’ but I had to say it anyway. I wanted to write more about the feeling of going to university rather than stating facts such as buying books is a waste of money - they are all in the library.

what to expect from your first year at uni

moving out of home

Moving out can be a scary step to take, and it is. It is also a chance to step out of your comfort zone and take on the opportunity to grow as a person. I was extremely lucky that I had moved into a student accommodation where all my flatmates turned out to be my best friends. However, this is definitely not always the case – some of you might not even move out at all but for the ones that will; everyone is going through the same process. Whenever I was feeling a bit lonely or missing home, I just thought about the fact that everyone else in the building was probably feeling the same way and that it is normal to miss home, it doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to live by yourself.

I personally moved into my accommodation two weeks before my classes started. It is good to get used to the feeling of not having parents around to make dinner for you or feed the cats in the morning. (you probably won’t have a cat at uni at all – hard reality to face I know). I used this time to decorate my room and what really helped me was using the same fragrance sticks and candles that my mum uses in the house, my room would smell like home again.

more appreciation for your own company 

What I found was after awhile of being at university and always being around many people in classes and at the accommodation, the time I had to myself in the evening was getting better and more relaxing as the months went by. At the beginning I did not want to be alone, I wanted to make more friends so that I would not have to be alone so much but after awhile I needed that time at night to reflect and relax. (or to do all nighters because let’s face it who isn’t good at procrastinating) for those nights I can only recommend lots of coffee and staying in the library if it is open 24 hours. I tried typing a report at 3am in bed but I just ended up falling asleep.

what to expect from your first year at uni
what to expect from your first year at uni

relying on those time management skills 

Even the non-existent ones. University will not be the only responsibility in your life. You will most likely need to manage your time between uni, a part time job, your hobby, social life and family responsibilities such as visiting them once in awhile. It was only after a few months when I could actually manage my time properly between going to uni 4 days a week, working 10-7 the other 3 days a week and still running my website and having a social life. Now you might get frustrated when you hear people around you complain about not having any time when they don't even go to work - I sure as hell did. However, just think to yourself that even though you will get home pretty stressed out everyday - you are still coping and working as hard as you can. Reward yourself for this. Even if it is taking yourself out for lunch or treating yourself to a day at the spa. (though you probably don't have time for this let's be honest.)

welcoming new friendships into your life

This subject is really important to me and I am thinking of writing a separate long blogpost about friendships. I have always been someone who pushes for growth, new adventures and stepping out of your comfort zone. This doesn't mean I don't find change difficult. I hate facing the fact that my first year of university and living in halls chapter has ended now and that I won't be living with those amazing people anymore.

I also know that true friends will stay by your side - even if you don't see them everyday. My bestfriend lives in another country but we are closer than ever. You will most likely be going to a different city, a different uni than your high school friends and it might feel like you're losing them. In my experience this can go two ways; 1. you might lose some of them. Accepting this might be difficult but if you were true friends, moving away would not change this. These people were not meant to stay in your life forever. Or 2, you will both grow and find your own path but remain close. These are the people you want to keep forever.

what to expect from your first year at uni

Growing apart or losing contact with your friends is really difficult and it can feel like you are the only one who puts effort into your friendship. I can tell you now that maybe you weren't that good friends to start with, because if they don't want to take some time out of their life to contact you - they aren't worth your time either. Everyone is busy, that is not an excuse. I am learning to accept this more and more.

The most important thing I want to say about this topic is to welcome new friendships into your life. You should always want to get to know new people and what better time than university. Everyone is new and everyone is in the same boat as you - I definitely found some of my best friends in this past year.

Lastly, good luck. It won't be easy dealing with so many new changes but you can do it.

Love, M x