When you first start university it can seem like so much is going on at once, it can be hard to get your head around it all and personally I got quite stressed! I wish that when I started uni, I had some sort of idea of how to manage my time, how to stay organised and how to deal with all the things that can get thrown at you when you first start. I thought a few tips on these things may help some of you just starting out.
It is important to get on top of time management as soon as possible as you can have so much to take in at first, you need some time to process it all before you get started. When you first start there are general talks regarding being a fresher, lectures, tutors and loads of information in the forms of leaflets, letters and flyers, don’t just put it all down and forget about it or throw it away, it might come be useful!
In the first few days, try and find an hour or two to go through everything; moving to uni is a massive thing and it’s important you try and take it all in. Have a look through everything and see if anything interests you. It’s in the first few days and weeks where groups will start up and if there is something you are interested in, you could see if others are too and make a society.
You will also get sent information regarding your lectures, or it will be handed out in your first one. They will tell you the times of your lectures, what lecturers expect from you and what you need to take with you, you don’t want to miss out on information like this as it can be really important and you don’t want to get stuck nearer the time. If you do want to hold onto all these things, which I think is a good idea at least for the beginning, you might want to think about investing in a desk tidy. You can get them for a really good price, and would fit basic notes, letters and documents, or you can get bigger ones like from Ikea for around £10 and would maybe a look a bit neater. You might want to keep all the leaflets and flyers just to refer back to when planning a night out (do you have to be up for that 9am lecture) or you might want them as a little keepsake for when you leave as something to look back on from when you first started. Something like a desk tidy would last a really long time, probably all the way through uni and then some after that, they are so useful and great for storing paperwork that might otherwise get left around.
Another place to store things like this is on a board on your wall which some halls and flats already have. You can just pin things to it and you know exactly where things are then. They’re also good for leaving little notes on to remind yourself to do things, e.g. start coursework this week, exam at 9am. Another organisation tip which might be useful is trying to make lists when you have a build-up of work. Sometimes you can get a lot put on you at once, with deadlines to meet and you may forget what work needs to be in first, what you need to etc. Making a list when you get given work can really help as you know from the beginning what you have to do and when for. Therefore you’re not panicking when you realise you have work to be in soon and it’s not done!
As well as organisation tips, I mentioned how important time management is. Even though when you first start, it’s all about freshers week and going out, it’s good to get into some sort of routine at the beginning. If you can, getting up at a set time everyday and going to bed at a set time each night (when you can) will really help. You’ll feel so much better for it and it gives you plenty of time to be getting sorted for your lectures, exploring the campus or even the town and city if you’ve moved from a different place, and you can get a good start on everything. Getting into a routine at the beginning will really help you when it comes to revising and preparing for exams. Hopefully it will mean a lot less stress as you’ll already know how much time you have each day spare to get revision done and also coursework.