It’s that time of year again! If you’re one of the fresh-faced (or sleep deprived) high school survivors about to start university, you might be feeling a range of unidentifiable emotions. You might have read articles giving you advice, telling you not to worry. I’m here to tell you that it’s okay to worry.
I was definitely on the nervous side when starting university. I was worried about a bunch of things, but before trying to deal with everything, I found it most useful to write those worries down. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by thoughts, whether positive or negative, take some time to list them. It will help you understand what you’re actually worried about, so that you can start to deal with it properly.
You’ll meet so many new people, it is likely that some will have at least one thing in common with you…
The main thing I initially worried about was not making any friends. Three years later, I find that worry downright laughable now. Even if you’re hesitant to socialise, there is so much to do that you’ll meet new people everyday, whether it’s in your accommodation, at lectures or at social events. Start small if you’re nervous: keep your bedroom door open, or hang out in the kitchen for a while, this will let others know you’re open to socialising. Suggest going to some Freshers’ Fortnight events together; even visiting the Societies Fair will give you a good idea of eachothers’ interests.
After that, it’s just a matter of finding people who share the same interests as you. You’ll meet so many new people, it is likely that some will have at least one thing in common with you. This is especially true the more activities you get involved in — join different societies, try a new sport, or watch a show at the Arts Centre. Surround yourself by things that interest you, and friends will follow.
You and your flatmates will probably set up a group chat when you move in, so make sure to communicate if any issues pop up…
Another thing I was anxiously anticipating was flatmate trouble. I was worried that someone might steal my food, or be annoyed if my cooking was loud. The first one did happen, but it wasn’t a big deal when it did. And the latter worry was unjustified; not only did my flatmates not mind my elaborate cooking, they seemed to like it. In general, people won’t complain since it is a shared a space, but if there’s a problem, try to compromise and plan ahead. You and your flatmates will probably set up a group chat when you move in, so make sure to communicate if any issues pop up.
If you’re left with course-specific anxieties, the best way to deal with them is getting in touch with those in the same position as you. Look for Facebook groups for Freshers in your subject, introduce yourself and get talking. Chances are, others will be feeling exactly like you, and you might be able to help each other out.
Whilst the upcoming months may seem overwhelming, it’s likely that most of your worries will end up not being realised…
Finally, whilst the upcoming months may seem overwhelming, it’s likely that most of your worries will end up not being realised. And if any are, you will learn to deal with them as you go.