One of the most significant changes you may have to face in your life is transitioning to college. Sounds like a major phase, doesn’t it? Well, it is, but it doesn’t have to be scary. If it’s any consolation, you’re not the only person struggling with the thought of being all alone in the big world. Perhaps you’re at a certain point where you’re wondering what it’s like to be in college, what to expect, and how to navigate such uncharted territory.
If that’s your case, fret not. With enough preparation and a few tips and tricks up your sleeve, transitioning to college life can be easier than you imagined it to be. If you’re ready to say goodbye to high school and say hello to being a university student, keep reading.
First Things First, Where Will You Live?
One of the hardest decisions you have to make as a college student is to choose where to live. There are several housing options you can select from, and your choice will largely influence at least the first year of your college life.
Suppose your school requires on-campus housing, which is great because that means lesser options for you. But if you’re open to living outside the campus, there’ll be several factors you need to consider to ensure you end up with accommodation that you won’t regret.
Looking for student housing months or weeks before school starts can give you enough time not to decide on impulse. You can take your time when checking out the surrounding neighborhoods. If you’re wondering what factors to consider or amenities to check, here are some tips you might find helpful:
Safety is one of the most important things you must consider when looking for student housing in college. If you plan to stay off-campus, you’ll be responsible for ensuring your safety as you go in and out of your new residence. Check security and how people get in and out of the apartment complex or building. Ask management when they last changed their locks as well.
Get a good feel for what the neighborhood is like. If you can find out the area’s crime rate, you can use that information to assess how safe the place is. Remember that you’ll be spending years in that community, so it’s best not to worry about your safety when walking alone on your way home from school at night.
Is the apartment or dorm accessible from your school? You don’t want to spend hours commuting to and from your residence to get to your classes every day. Finding a living arrangement that won’t compromise your time and energy is ideal. If you can find student housing right across the street from your university, that would be a better option. Take, for example, the Vintage at Tabernacle, which is accessible on foot if you’re enrolled at Utah Tech University. It’s advantageous on your end to live in a residence that’s close enough to your school, so you can come to class on time no matter how late you stayed up the night before.
An apartment building with laundry facilities and a fitness center sounds obviously better when considering where to live as a college student. Your convenience is another priority on your checklist that you need to tick off, especially since you’ll be pretty busy juggling your time and tasks.
You want most of your time devoted to studying and doing school-related stuff rather than figuring out where to take your dirty clothes. In addition, consider a student residence that offers education-based amenities such as a dedicated study hall and a fast internet connection.
Learning How To Manage Your Time Well
When you’ve figured out the best living arrangement, it’s time to think about other things that can help you make a smooth transition to college life. Since you’ll likely have a busier schedule than when you were still in high school, it comes with being accountable for your time management and figuring out an efficient system.
Time management is often an area that most students find challenging to navigate, college or not. But now that you’re almost an adult, it’s time to get serious and improve how you handle your time. Effective time management can help you transition well to major life changes, including being a college student.
Here are some time management tips you might want to take note of:
According to studies, switching between tasks frequently makes people less productive and increases the risk of making mistakes, especially when the jobs are complicated and require active attention. Therefore, trying to do several tasks simultaneously will only hurt your productivity rather than get more things done.
That said, it’s best to focus on one task at a time and complete it first before moving on to another. While doing so, take the time to evaluate the most common distractions you encounter daily, so you can resist the urge to multitask. These distractions typically include social media and electronic devices.
Create A To-Do List
The moment you set foot in your university, you’ll have so much on your plate, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. The key is to identify the things you need to do based on urgency to prioritize them accordingly. State on your list how much time you need to accomplish the task and when it is due. Having a to-do list gives you a head start on how to tackle your day and ensures you’ll be able to complete what needs to be done.
Break Down Long-Term Assignments
Procrastination often happens when you feel overwhelmed with your tasks, important exams, and projects. One way to get around this is by learning to break down long-term assignments that can take a chunk of your time to complete in one go. What you can do instead is to identify which parts you can finish in the shortest time and start doing them one by one. The goal is to enable yourself to start the assignment and keep going until all is done.
Establish A Routine And Stick To It
Routines can serve you well if your goal is to accomplish the tasks you have to do on or before their deadlines. Perhaps you find studying early in the morning more efficient or prefer working on your assignments in the library. To establish a routine, start doing what you find most comfortable and effective in helping you reach your goals. From there, make sure you stick to your study habits and follow them as you go along.
Taking Care Of Yourself
Now that you’re in college, you need to be more responsible when taking care of yourself. This includes getting enough sleep, eating your meals on time, and being cautious when meeting new people. It’s not yet too late to get started on a healthy lifestyle—you need it now more than ever.
Treating your mind and body well can go a long way in helping you endure (and enjoy) college life. You’ll find your mind in a much better state, thus creating a positive snowball effect that can impact all the other aspects of your life.
Ready to start taking better care of yourself? Here are more tips and tricks to consider:
Make Time For Self-Care
Stress and anxiety can take a toll on your physical and mental health. Now that you’re a college student, you may find yourself in situations that can easily trigger negative emotions, such as missing family or dealing with tons of schoolwork. You have to be mindful of your feelings and emotions. Learn to understand your body better, especially when it’s starting to show signs that you need to take a breath and de-stress. Take time to do things you love and enjoy, even if it’s just something as simple as getting your nails done or watching your favorite Netflix show.
Invest In Your Social Life
Getting involved in your community can help you transition smoothly to college life. Don’t be afraid to get out of your comfort zone to meet new people. However, note that those you spend most of your time with can influence who you become someday. So, while at it, try your best to choose your relationships wisely and invest in friendships that can help you grow well as a person.
Learn How To Manage Your Finances
As a college student, you may not always be able to do or get everything you want. Simply put, you don’t have the luxury of eating out anytime you want, buying new clothes frequently, or going to the movies every weekend with your friends.
Remember to live within your means. Know that attending college is costly. Being financially responsible is preferable, which can eventually impact how well you’ll navigate the real world once you graduate.
Transitioning to college life is a challenging process for many, but it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it. A smooth transition is possible as long as you’re well prepared and know how to be responsible as a student. You might mess up along the way but keep at it because it’s part of the process. Soon enough, you’ll be easing your way through college life and transitioning to adulthood successfully.