2016 is upon us and first year is looking at you right in the eyes. Now that you’ve left home it’s time you fend for yourself. No more coming home to meals made for you! From sex to safety- look after yourself. Heard of first year spread? It’s a thing.
1. Balanced diet. Yes, it’s okay to occasionally have the odd pizza and burger, but don’t eat cornflakes for breakfast every morning. You need your fruit and veggies to keep that busy brain of yours fuelled.
2. Snacks. Can we hear an Amen! The sweet word that makes eating socially acceptable at anytime. Keep these healthy- hummus and carrots, peanut butter and apples; whatever combo tickles your fancy.
3. Drink water– at least a litre a day, and stay away from sugary drinks.
4. Walk to class. Fresh air will do you a world of good. Start your day with a kick of endorphins.
5. Join a sports team. Look into the sports clubs and teams available to you on your campus. If you go to a smaller campus, join a private team.
6. Get a exercise buddy. You’re gonna needs someone to pull you out of bed on those days when you just can’t.
7. Get enough sleep. Sleep is so important. Those all-nighters aren’t going to do your brain or body any good.
8. Do something relaxing before bed. Switch your laptop off and put your phone down. Meditate, do Yoga or read to get your mind off things.
9. Go for regular check ups. These are especially important for women- Pap smears, mammograms, STD tests and general health check-ups.
10. Have sex whenever YOU want. Whether you are a one-man woman or a many-men woman- that’s your choice and nobody should judge you for it.
11. Use protection. Just do it!
12. Time limits. Give yourself a certain amount of time to do a task. If you don’t finish, put it down and carry on later.
13. Do something you enjoy. Your hobby will give you something to look forward to, and it’s a great stress release.
14. Management skills. Learn how to manage your time when it comes to assignments. There’s no fun in being that person that does everything last minute.
15. Expect change. Things don’t stay the same. Lots of things will change as you meet new people and experience the world of university.
16. Awareness of mental health. Even if you have never suffered from it in the past, it’s something many people you will encounter have to deal with.
17. Set goals. Short term and long term ones.
18. Have ‘me’ time. You need time out for yourself, otherwise you’re going to burn out. So make sure you make time to chillax.
19. Don’t walk alone (especially at night). Campuses, although they have security, are not the safest of places.
20. Carry pepper spray with you. There is no harm in protecting yourself.
21. Be aware. Don’t walk around with earphones in. Make sure you keep an eye out where ever you are.
22. Cook. Getting takeaways can be expensive and often not good for your body.
23. Buy in bulk. Stationery, toilet paper, frozen food etc.
24. Don’t splurge on alcohol. It’s expensive. Pre-drink before you go out to avoid paying astronomical prices at the bars.
25. Be open to meeting new people. You are going to be surrounded by people interested in the same things as you- here is your chance to choose your friends.
26. Be prepared to lose high school friends. Some of them will stick, but others go on to do their own thing. You sort of just lose contact- even though social media will keep you updated.
27. Relationships are complicated. It’s better not to have a boyfriend/girlfriend in varsity, because it allows you to meet more people and have more fun. But hey, if you’re into being in a relationship- go for it!
28. You will miss family. Homesickness may strike in the first two weeks, but things get better as you become accustomed to your new home.
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