Mistakes We All Make at University (and How to Avoid Them)

University is a wonderful time; you finally get out of your hometown and start actually figuring yourself out. You make new friends, try new things, and ultimately have a mental breakdown about your future at some point. Everyone also makes some mistakes during their time at university: you’re still not sure how to balance all parts of your life yet and all the responsibilities can be overwhelming. So in the spirit of the new school year I have compiled a list of common mistakes and how to avoid them.

  1. 1. Eating like garbage

    We all do this: get busy with school, work, clubs, etc. and totally stop putting work into balanced meals. I mean with all the stress who can resist comfort food? But then you start losing energy during the day and craving a homemade dinner. Eating habits have a huge affect on how we feel physically and mentally; so no, your mom was not joking when she said you need to eat your vegetables. But there are a few things you can do to keep your eating healthy. Having a regular shopping schedule is important since it keeps you from having an empty kitchen hence the temptation of takeout. On top of that plannout out your meals ahead of time instead of in the moment. When you have a plan of what you want to eat it's easier to come home and make something good for you that you have ready. Of course, we all need to splurge and indulge in some rich foods but putting work into some well balanced meals is important for your overall health and can keep you going through the school year.

  2. 2. Overbooking yourself

    Oh, all the social events that fill up your calendar: parties, club events, brunches, sporting events, and just chill hangouts. They all start to take up all your free time which can be a great thing when you are spending your time how you want but it can become very overwhelming. It can cause all-nighters for a class and a lack of some much needed self-care. And honestly, the best way of dealing with it is learning to say no to things. Prioritize the most important things and don’t feel bad for saying no to your friend who wants to go to that party Friday night. You’ll be happy you didn’t go later.

  3. 3.  Not talking to others in class 

    Sometimes, especially in your 4th and 3rd year of school, you don’t feel the need to reach out to new people. You already have your squad and you actually prefer sitting alone in class. And you can go a whole semester not speaking to anyone new and figure it was fine. But trust me, it is a mistake. One of the best things about university os all the people you get to meet people from different backgrounds and classes can be a place to get to know someone completely different from your usual people. So when your first day of classes rolls around consider sitting by someone new.

  4. 4. Being scared of a prof

    We have all at some point been intimidated by a professor. It’s hard not to: they grade, teach, and mentor us, which sometimes can lead to people being too afraid to ask questions and go to office hours for help. Who wants to spend alone time with someone who kinda freaks you out? Some of the best support you can get in a class is from your prof and you are paying for them to teach you. So, if you find yourself struggling to make it to office hours, ask a friend to go with you. Then you don’t have to be alone and they can keep you accountable.

  5. 5. Obsessing over your crush

    Meeting new people your age can mean meeting someone ~special~ if you get the drift. A lot of college students are looking for a relationship in the fall (it is cuffing season) and it can be easy to form a crush. This can be all well and good until things don’t work out and you can’t move on. You can’t help but always check their social media and ignore the ones actually interested in you. But there is a way to move on: get them out of your life. Yup, I said it, if you keep them in your life always lingering in the background you will hold onto the chance of something happening. Best to get rid of the dirty laundry for good. 

No one said University would be easy, but to avoid these major pitfalls will allow you to better enjoy your time while getting a degree. And you will make some mistakes because we all do, and all you can do is learn from it. So gear up for the new semester ladies and gents.