Having been through University and come out the other end successfully, I think back to my days as a student and often realise how I could have made my life easier during those times. Perspective is a strange thing; we often realise something when it’s way too late, yet these lessons and experiences can still help us later in life.
The next best thing we can do is pass along our knowledge, in an effort to make someone else’s student life easier. That’s almost the whole purpose of this guest blog post, sharing my life in an effort to help others, but as a graduate I’m in a very good position to assist others in achieving that awesome student lifestyle, as well as avoid the common mistakes myself and many others have made.
So what steps can you take to achieve your dream student situation?
One lesson I’ve learnt here is not to get down about your digs. Most student homes are built for purpose; housing a large number of supposedly rowdy youths with minimal effect. This is why they may feel a bit more clinical than you’d like, but it’s nothing that a bit of interior design can’t solve. Get together with your housemates and work to create a better environment, whether you pool money to invest in essential homewares or simply contribute from personal effects.
Either way, you’re all living together, so it’s up to you to ensure your accommodation is the best it can be. With proper coordination with your housemates, there’s also plenty of ways improve your living conditions whilst also saving money. The increasing popularity of rental furniture has resulted in tailor made student furniture packages being available from several outlets; not only is this more cost effective than buying new furniture outright, but the ownership is retained by the company itself, so you don’t have to worry about complicated moving sessions or contended ownership.
An awesome student house is a combination of everybody’s efforts, so get all your housemates on board moving forward. As a student, take pragmatic steps to keep everyone on the same page. Invest in a whiteboard for making notes, so you and your housemates can keep up to speed on what you’re running low on, or what needs to be done around the house.
Another big mistake many students make is indifference to the opportunities which could further their careers in the future. As such, all opportunities should be considered in terms of what kind of experience you’ll get and whether it’ll help you achieve your career goals years from now. It may be hard to see in the moment, but anything within your desired industry, whether it’s part-time or weekend work, or even an internship are all highly viable ways to boost your professional credentials whilst studying.
In most student cities, there are a wealth of these opportunities available, but you need to make an effort and look for them. Contact outlets and businesses that are relevant to your studies and enquire about work experience opportunities. The fact that you’ve made an effort will register with them, putting you in a good position to further the exchange and turn it into an opportunity. Whilst taking advantage of these opportunities is key to success, make sure you aren’t committing to something that will distract from your studies, or with little or no value to your ongoing learning.
A balance of work and play is a recipe for the perfect student lifestyle. Party too much, and it’ll most likely interfere with your studies. Party too little, and you could end up regretting not having a full University experience. Only an appropriate combination will ensure you can enjoy the student lifestyle fully without damaging your grades.
Hiding away if you’re not comfortable socially may seem appealing, but for the good of your studies, get involved with the social student scene and give yourself access to as many resources possible. Just be confident!
This guest post was created by Tara Dulake at ThoughtShift - this is not a sponsored post! Also here's a fun little fact, today marks three years for me since I graduated from university with a first class BSc Hons degree in psychology *crazy*.