University Survival Guide!

Hello, hello, hello!
It is that time of year when people are heading back or just starting university so I thought I would write down my top tips of how to survive your university life as well what is perfect to help you settle into your university room!
I wish I had read something like this prior to going or whilst I was there so I hope this actually helps some people to survive university and find it more relaxing and easy to settle in! 🙂 

1. Personalise 
When you first move to university, especially if you are moving into halls in first year or into a basic student rental house, you will feel a bit daunted by the blank white walls and how you can incorporate your home comforts into this temporary space. 
The first thing I did when I moved into every student room I had was add a crap tonne of photos, cards, gig tickets, stickers, wristbands and so on all over my room and on the notice board most university halls do have. 
This quick thing transforms your basic university room into your own and you can feel at home so much quicker! Plus, if you feel a bit down you can look at pictures of your friends and families to perk you up!
Here are some websites I did and would’ve sworn by when I first left for University;

LaLaLab ~
Photobox ~

2. Home Cooking
Before I left for university my sister gifted me with a note book that you can handwrite all of your own recipes in which meant I could collect home recipes from my mum, nana and auntie prior to leaving home. This therefore meant I could make meals that reminded me of home and made me feel like the next Nigella Lawson (jokes). This can help you feel more settled by eating home comforts as well as having good meals that will fill you up and not just include opening packets and shoving things in the oven!
Here is the link to a recipe book you can write yourself!

Recipe Journal ~

If you don’t fancy writing your own recipe book there are so many affordable and easy to follow recipe books you can pick up to make sure you can meal plan and eat properly whilst away at uni! Cooking for yourself can be a challenge so make this easier for yourself by gathering some good cookbooks! 
Here are some I would recommend:

Nosh For Students ~ Joy and Ron May~
~ From Pasta to Pancakes: The Ultimate Student Cookbook ~ Tiffany Goodall ~
~ 200 Student Meals ~ Hamlyn ~

3. Don’t fight other peoples battles
This potentially applies more when you first arrive at university and you’re meeting so many new people and trying to make new friendships. 
At school you have probably been dragged into arguments by groups of friends and had to fight battles for other people, I found at university this was amplified and made even more difficult. Friendships are difficult at the best of times but are even harder when you’re battling for other people in the same group.
If some of your friends get into arguments or disagreements leave them to it and do not get involved, especially if they are housemates of yours, as hard as it is to do.
Let them squabble it out, trust me. If you get involved it can easily be turned onto you and then you’ve fallen out with more people than expected, stay out of it and don’t get involved!

4. Don’t Clean Other Peoples Mess
In student accommodation overall there will be a messy kitchen, bathroom or shower room. If other people have made it a mess or refuse to clean up after themselves, do not clean it for them. It turns into angst for you and you will end up disliking the person for not cleaning up after themselves. 
If you have just cleaned the kitchen and someone goes in and cooks one meal that ends up messing up the whole kitchen leave it for them to clean or do it as a joint effort. Don’t end up doing all of the cleaning, make sure its shared.
Me and my housemates made a ‘cleaning rota’ of who would do what on what day such as; taking the bin out, tidying the communal area, hoovering the house, cleaning the bathroom and so on. This made it much easier and reduced the arguments and battles of who’s turn it was as we consulted the rota and then it was sorted! This sounds crazy but it really does help! 

5. Give Yourself Time for You.
Having time to relax and watch a film, read a book, do some work and be away from alcohol and partying is actually pretty important when you’re at university. 
This may sound insane as ‘students only drink and party why would they sit and chill for an evening?!’ Because students are just normal people and need some down time too. Make sure you still give yourself the time you need to relax, recoup-orate and get some well deserved rest.
Put on your favourite film, tv show, music or pick up your favourite reading material and just chill. Sometimes we all just need some silence and this is sometimes more needed when you’re at university. Don’t be afraid to give yourself that time and if any one says anything ignore them or tell them where to go as sooner or later they will do exactly the same thing 😉 

6. Organisation
Being organised for your university work as well as in your university room is pretty essential. Tidy house tidy mind, as they say. If your room is a tip you will never feel fully motivated to do your work, or you will distract yourself from work by tidying. 
Stay on top of your floor wardrobe, make your bed every morning, put the mugs and glasses in the kitchen and wash them up and do your laundry frequently to avoid the Leaning Tower of Underwear in the corner of your room.
Put your work into folders, have different notebooks for different modules and keep on top of what is due when. Your module handbooks tend to have deadlines for your assignments in them so check those dates and put them in your planner or on your calendar. Don’t let things creep up on you and stress you out, it really is not worth the lack of sleep and constant headaches from too much energy drink. Just be organised and stay on top of things to avoid that drowning feeling 🙂 

7. The Right Tools
Heading to university is super exciting and new but making sure you have the right things with you is pretty important! If you’re one lucky little thing you will be able to take a laptop with you so you can study from home along with a decent memory stick so you can back up all of your precious work throughout your studies. 
If you don’t have a personal laptop, do not fret, all universities have libraries and break out study areas with desktop PC’s and most have a laptop loan service in the library so you can loan laptops or book PC’s to complete all of your work! 🙂

Just so you don’t forget any of the major things (I forgot coat hangers in my first year so my friend had to bring them to me..) here is a handy checklist for you so you can bring all of the important(ish) stuff!
University Check List

> Duvet/ Duvet Covers
> Pillows/ Pillow Cases
> Mattress Protector
> Bed Sheets
> Personalisation items; photos, books, DVDs, fairy lights etc etc
> Coat Hangers
> Clothes
> Shoes
> Cleaning Products
> Toiletries
> Yourself 😉

There you go, guys, one university survival guide for you!
University is a whirlwind and before you know it, it’s over. So make sure you don’t get too wrapped up in other peoples drama, focus on what you want to do and make sure you are happy. Don’t focus too much on making others happy, this is your time to come into your own, enjoy it and remember it!

Talk soon,

Laura xo


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