September 14, 2018, by Hannah-Marie
Taking care of yourself at university
There’s no doubt that university can be a pretty overwhelming experience for many new students. Late nights, exam stress, constant socialising; the latter, being a certified introvert, can often become my arch-nemesis. And, as a result, you may end up sacrificing your mental and physical health if you aren’t sure how to properly take care of yourself. Here are a few things that you can do to keep yourself working at your best throughout your time at university.
Being at university comes with a lot of newfound independence. You won’t have the luxury of your parents cooking for you anymore, so you’re going to have to go it alone. Find some basic recipes online or buy a cheap recipe book if you need some guidance. It’s pretty basic advice, but eating healthy is a key factor in taking care of yourself at university. But of course, don’t forget to treat yourself every once in a while.
Exercise (e-sports doesn’t count):
Now this is coming from someone who could quite happily stay indoors, wrapped in a blanket and watch RuPaul’s Drag Race for days at a time, but make sure you go outside every now and again. You know, the scary, cold place with the trees and buildings? Not only is regular exercise good for your body, its also very good for the mind. Take a walk around the lake or a local park, go for a run or hire a bike for the afternoon. You could even use this as the perfect opportunity to take up a brand new activity you never even considered trying – check out the societies fair during Welcome Week!
Make time for you:
University is a very social environment, particularly during Welcome Week. While its great to get stuck in, it’s also important to take some time out for yourself. Don’t feel pressured into joining in with every event if you aren’t feeling up to it – it’s more than okay to say ‘no’. Having a relaxing night in with Netflix and ice cream every once in a while will give you the time you need to recharge your batteries.
Keep in regular contact with your family:
Moving away from home is a new and often daunting experience for new students, especially if home isn’t just a short train journey away. Make sure to keep in contact with your family and friends regularly, and no, a Facebook status update once a month doesn’t count. Send them pictures of what’s going on around campus and keep them updated on what you’ve been up to in classes or what kind of events you’ve been involved in. Being positive and open about your university life is a good way to combat homesickness. A Whatsapp group is the perfect way to keep everyone updated!
Your personal tutor is your new best friend:
If you have a problem, whether that be academic related or a more personal issue, they can help, or point you in the right direction of where to get the advice you need. That’s what they’re there for, so make sure to use them, and I mean that in the nicest way possible.
There are plenty of other ways to take good care of yourself an university, such as regulating how much alcohol you drink and registering with a local or on-campus doctor. Just remember, it’s far better to get into a routine of taking care of yourself from the start, as opposed to neglecting yourself and burning out in the middle of the year.