Tuesday, 18 April 2017

5 Things You Will Struggle With Your First Year

    I am currently writing this in a Starbucks, supposedly supposed to be studying for my last final of the first year. I was drinking an extremely large amount of caffeine and going through my notes when I realised I had made it, I had survived the ominous first year or well almost. This list is a compiling of the things I learned that will hopefully guide you through the same experiences and avoid some of the same pitfalls that I encountered

1.It is not Like the TV shows 
    I don't know what I expected, however, when imagining my university experience I thought it would be like what they showed in the movies, stellar grades, engaging discussions and easy friends. Man was I wrong while these things are here you have to work for them, nobody is good at university at first, it reminds me of a lucid dream, you have minor control of what goes on around you and it is all a little surreal 

2. You are going to be so tired you will want to give up
    I was sitting at my desk, writing my third paper of the week, the pain of being tired and overworked was pulsing through my brain. Combine that not sleeping well with having limited supply and time to sleep and the results are fairly toxic. I remember thinking that it couldn't be that bad, that people were just exaggerating, that the sleep deprivation would not happen to me, it happened, its real, and most of my friends walked through the same experience. Put away all your notes if you can and head to bed. If you can't, realise that the pain is temporary and the reward for this sleep deprivation is greater future for you and your family.

3. Overworked 
    You will have those weeks where everything is due when your time is scheduled to the exact minute and you cannot possibly make time to leave your study zone. These times are hard and most of the time I put most of my effort into making it through them. You are going to want to give up, it is hard, it is tiring and boring yet extremely stressful at the same time. When these weeks happen to me I find solace in prayer, asking for the strength to make it through these challenging times. You pray that the week will end so you can sleep, and in the same breath you pray that you have the mental strength to do well on your papers and finals. Kind of an oxymoron.

4. Drive 
    It was the middle of my fall semester and I could feel my drive dropping off a cliff, I didn't want to go to class, do the readings or participate in discussions. This is normal, however, you need to recognise the signs of this and try and prevent this if possible, procrastination and laziness get out of control extremely fast and can leave you overloaded.

5. Saying No

    You learn to do this a lot in your first year whether it is no to engagements with friends or to shifts at work, you can't fit anything else in, and things that were definite yes’s before university suddenly become no’s. This can be difficult. Missing out is hard, however, the bigger picture must prevail. Putting your studies and yourself first is not selfish it's a requirement for a balanced mental psyche, most of the time your pushing you brain to maximum capacity, memorising concepts, understanding diagrams and writing essays, you will not always be able to accommodate a party or a shopping date. This is ok, you are moving mountains, do not sweat the small stuff