Before you kick-start your college/university life, here are some things that people might not tell you about. There will be ups and downs, trust us everyone has been through them so you are not alone. During your life as a college/uni student, you may feel lost at some point or have to make the right choices that could help you in the future. It’s also the time when you will struggle in trying to balance your social life, grades, and sleep schedules. A roller coaster ride awaits!
Let’s start with this diagram…
I am sure you have seen this triangle about work-life balance on your social media before. Second-year students can deeply relate to this because university life will be hectic so I advise first-year students to enjoy the freedom as much as possible. However, grades are still important!
Life as a First-year student
It’s your first day of college/university! Meet and make as many friends as you can but they won’t necessarily stick with you till the end. They might end up in another group later on but it’s okay because friends that stick with you till the end are the best! Making friends sometimes takes time so don’t be shy and just reach out to the person nearest to you. You will soon make friends that you would keep in contact with for the rest of the semester.
However, do remember to stay alert and look out for friends who just want benefits especially those that rely on you to do all the hard work. Trust me, there are people out there who want good grades but not so much of the friendship. This is when you should think wisely and choose to keep your distance because they might take everything you do for granted! That is the harsh reality (life ain’t all sunshine and rainbows).
Learning to let go of a friendship that pulls you down is better than holding onto it. It helps you to grow as an individual.
As a first-year student, I know most of you will prioritize your grades very much because who wouldn’t want a high CGPA? It’s good to be a hardworking and studious student but sometimes it’s alright to just go with the flow and enjoy your life as a college/university student. During your first year, you will take the basic courses required for your degree. The assignments also won’t be as hard as compared to the ones in the next few years. So, you can still procrastinate (not TOO much though). Just make sure that you submit your assignments on time and do everything required for your studies.
A first-year student’s sleep schedule won’t be as affected compared to a second or third-year student. First-year students might feel as if they are in the “honeymoon” phase. Sleep while you can because you won’t get precious sleep after you complete your first year of college/university. Believe us you won’t know what is sleep anymore (a common problem faced by many students).
Appreciate your sleep while you can!
Life as a second-year student (it’s gonna be hectic!)
The real struggle begins once you start your second year of college/university. As a second-year student, you might already have a group of close friends or maybe one or two friends that you always hang out with. They could be your ride-or-die companions for the whole semester. You’ll spend a lot of time with friends during and after lectures to have a good time. Hanging out together after a long day of lectures is the best! Maybe even skipping a lecture to enjoy time at the cinemas (sometimes rest is important). We sure every student has done that before especially if the class is in the evening. However, don’t skip lectures too often because it might end up becoming a bad habit.
Remember to choose the right friends that you hang out with.
Remember back then when you were a first-year student, lectures seemed exciting for you and you wouldn’t really care about the time. But once you are in your second year of college/university, you’ll start to rely on your friends to sign your attendance if you oversleep (don’t ever do that unless you want your lecturer to question the whole class once he/she finds out). Grades are equally important because you have to at least pass them to move on to the next semester. Continue with finishing assignments on time and make sure to do the tasks that can help you earn extra credit.
You’ll feel proud if you got the grade after you worked hard to obtain it. Nothing like a high CGPA, am I right? At the same time, remember to take some time off from studying and join events that are organized by students around campus. That way you can immerse yourself even more and experience college/university life!
In your second year of college/university, it’s best to appreciate the amount of sleep you can get. Try to manage time for your social life and studies. Same as in your first year, start doing your assignments early by setting a timeline and strictly following it so that you can have more time to spend with friends. That way you won’t be as stressed and suffer sleepless nights because of your assignments. Remember that sleep is important because health is wealth as the older generation will say and it’s true! Having sufficient sleep has proved to be beneficial in terms of improving your grades, better memory, lower risk of obesity, decreased chances of getting sick, and overall maintaining a good mood.
If you had to go through a sleepless night, do get some shut-eye once you are done with everything. Or else your dark circles continue to worsen, well sometimes you have them due to genetics. Nevertheless, treasure your sleep as it will be even more precious during your third year of college/university.
Life as a Third-year student (Final year for most degree students)
As a third-year student, you probably would only hang out with a close group of friends that you will pair up with for assignments. It will feel as if anything can be easily overcome with their help. They will be there for you through your ups and downs even if all of you are young, dumb, and broke (chill, we’re just joking). You will start to appreciate the time spent with them before you officially graduate from university. When the end of the semester comes around, there will be bittersweet feelings as everyone will be taking their separate ways, be it to further their studies or to find their first job.
However, it may be a coincidence if you and your friend decide to further your studies. You might end up in the same university and course again if you both are lucky!
Grades are very crucial at this point in time, so you better buckle down and focus on your studies. Do everything assigned by your lecturer to get that extra credit because every mark is important. Try to start your assignments early, so that you won’t have to pull an all-nighter and end up looking like a zombie (I’ve been there). The weightage for each assignment will be heavy and it might come as a challenge for you to manage your time properly. Of course, you can choose to procrastinate at times but make sure not to overdo it. If not you might end up regretting putting off work until the last minute.
Since it’s the last year of college/university, you might as well do your best.
“Sleep is for the weak” – This is something you might hear throughout your third year as a college/university student. You can start to observe during every lecture that some of your friends might appear as if they had never slept a wink before coming for the lecture. They probably had to burn the midnight oil and finish assignments that were due before the lecture. It could be the same for you too if you have a lot of assignments to juggle and need to prioritize one of them first. Having sleepless nights and dark circles under your eyes wouldn’t be something new. You’d think that you are doing everything you can to get through the semester. But we think it’s wise to plan your time properly so that you still get adequate sleep and not look like a zombie.
Trust us, it feels very draining to the mind and soul if you still procrastinate and only rush assignments till 3am. It will be a never-ending cycle.
These are the phases you’ll go through as a college/university student. Everyone will experience it differently so don’t put so much pressure on yourself and just try to seize the great opportunities that you might have. Enjoy your school life as much as you can while balancing other aspects of life because it’s not the same once you start working.
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