Having the freedom that comes with hall life may be fun, but it’s easy to get carried away.
Going to school can be a real pain. With the emotional, mental and physical strain we face, it is sometimes so hard to wake up early each day and drag ourselves to classes.
Thankfully, I have my university hall to thank for being a strong support system that got me through the toughest four years of my life so far.
But it took me quite a while to grasp a healthy school-life balance. Besides having to suddenly become an adult and take care of myself, it was difficult to keep myself accountable – having to juggle classes, assignments and managing my social life with my friends, who were now also my neighbours.
So here are some tips from a fourth year to maximise your hall life experience without compromising your grades.
This may sound like common sense, but your first year in university is probably going to be the least hectic. As you progress each year, your workload and difficulty level is definitely going to continuously increase. So what better time to get involved in hall activities than in your first year?
Join committees, attend hall events and step out of your comfort zone. Being in hall gives you the opportunity to build your own home away from home, so go all out and enjoy your freshman days before the heavy workload starts piling up.
One of the most special things about your neighbours in hall is that everyone is pretty much going through the same struggles. Who better to understand the stress of an overworked university student than another overworked university student?
While staying in your own bubble may seem like a convenient way to live, why not make the first move and say hello to your neighbours? Who knows, you might just find your new supper buddy or even the person who is going to save you from the cockroaches and lizards lurking in the corner of your room.
It is easy to get carried away when you don’t have anyone policing your every move. However, you don’t want to find yourself going broke from all the crazy partying and late-night supper sessions.
Rather than always eating out or ordering in, stock up on light snacks and instant food. Or if you’re conscious about your diet, get some protein bars, nuts, cereals or even fresh fruit that can be easily stored and prepared even during the wee hours of the night.
Indulging in hearty suppers once in a while is fine, but if you find yourself getting hungry every night, go grocery shopping and stock up your own personal pantry to avoid breaking your bank every time your stomach rumbles.
This point is the toughest. It is easy to get carried away with all the fun that comes along with having freedom, but the last thing you want is for all your friends to graduate leaving you behind, alone in a hall full of freshmen.
It is important to know when to draw the line and realise that it’s okay to turn down social events once in a while. Your friends are NOT going to cast you away just because you choose to sit out of a few supper sessions.
Instead, suggest productive activities, such as exercising or even hitting the books together. This way you’ll be able to spend time with your friends while keeping yourself in check as well. At the end of the day, you’re still in university to get your degree, right?
Being in hall can definitely brighten up a dull and tiring university experience, and it can help you create memories you will never forget.
However, with great power definitely comes great responsibility. And if all of the sudden adulting reality checks life has thrown at you thus far hasn’t made you grow up, then maybe staying in hall just might.
Learn to take control of your own life, and maybe you’ll be able to make it out of university in one piece, ready to take on the working world.
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