Starting university is a daunting journey for most, much less during a global pandemic.
With current COVID-19 restrictions, you might find yourself more isolated than expected. All the plans to enjoy freshers at full throttle have haltered to a stop and instead been replaced with online or socially distanced events.
Bearing this in mind, we have come up with some tips that should help students look after their wellbeing this year.
- Take part in all your online events – with an open mind
While you may feel the Zoom quizzes or online Bingo nights are not worth your time, it can be worth showing up as it is a good starting point to meet new people and make friends.
- Keep the fear of missing out (FOMO) out of your mind
Whether you are doing all your socialising online, or able to enjoy small face-to-face gatherings (at a social distance), it is important to take time for yourself and not worry about FOMO.
Try to find a hobby to keep yourself occupied, during those times you find yourself alone in your room, which allows you to decompress and relax. You will not be available 24/7 to make friends or take part, and that goes for everyone.
- Map out your finances
Planning your expenditures and budgeting is a huge part of student life, and to help with this many students rely on part time roles which are now harder to find than ever.
It is important to remember that this situation is just temporary and will hopefully get better. It is also encouraged for you to contact your university if you are struggling – many universities have money and welfare teams that can possibly provide support.
On your side, meal-planning, sticking to a planned weekly shop and keeping track of how many nights you go out in the week can also help.
- Plan things to look forward to
While it is unrealistic to expect people to not socialise, especially during a time of personal development, experts have suggested that you should plan weekly activities.
This is a great way to maintain a positive outlook – whether it be a socially distanced walk, meeting up for coffee or going to watch a film.
- Remember, you deserve your place
With the impact of COVID leaving the future uncertain, the A-Levels and grading system used for students prior to joining university was altered.
All students are reminded that you still deserve your place, with many students reportedly suffering from imposter syndrome.
- Follow the rules!
Over time you will come to the realisation that life is simpler if you just follow the rules! These guidelines have been set for a reason, so always do your best to follow and observe them!
By Anirudh Nair