If you’re currently in full-time education, then I really, really want you to enjoy your time at university. It might be different if you’ve taken time off to work in between studies, but I went straight from school, to college, to university. That meant I didn’t really have any understanding of what having a full-time job is really like, and I feel like I could have done so much more with my time now I know what it’s like when someone else owns most of it. So, here’s why you should enjoy your time at university and make the most of it!
1. Time to Work
One thing about your time at university is that you have a lot of it – I never had a part time job whilst I was studying and I really wish I had. If you live in a student town, then there should be plenty going, on and off campus. I didn’t want to give up my time with my books and my friends, but really I would have been better giving up my time sat in front of reality TV with a bowl of super noodles. Relish only having to work for a couple of days a week and save the money for all the exciting things that make up student life.
2. Friend Time
Since my friends and I have all left university, it’s much harder for us all to find a time where we can meet up. In a way, that makes the time we do have together more precious, but it also makes it more of a headache to arrange. I wish I’d appreciated the fact that I saw my close friends every day, went out two or three times a week and lived in such a community environment more. Being a grown-up is a bit lonely.
3. Do Your Reading!
Ah, how I wish I had done more of the assigned reading. I don’t know about you, but we all thought that the chapters we were told to read each week were more like suggestions, rather than obligations. I had so much spare time to read but I didn’t utilize it properly. I really think organising my time better would have helped me out immensely. Don’t make excuses for why you can’t do that reading – you have the time. I know you do, because I was you!
One thing I did do at university (and I’m really pleased I did) was volunteer. Chances are, you will never get the same opportunities to do so again. I’ve tried to get back into volunteering since I’ve started working, but with a 9-6 job, the hours often just don’t work. There are so many brilliant things to choose from and you should be able to fit them around your lectures with little inconvenience.
5. The Build-up
This is a bit of a niche one; I am a massive fan of Christmas. In fact, any kind of holiday. It’s coming up to Christmas now and there’s normally lots of people you want to see; family, friends, colleagues. BUT THERE ARE SO FEW WEEKENDS. You have so much time at university to get excited about things; about Christmas, about the summer, about the fancy dress party at the weekend. I love that excitement; you should bask in it whilst you have the time to enjoy it.
6. You Can Make Mistakes
OK, so don’t momentarily fluff up your degree – but university is a time where you can make mistakes and they won’t feel like the end of the world. Personally, I feel like a mistake at work is a BIG deal, even little ones. These people don’t have to have me here, they don’t have to pay me – there’s so many others waiting to take my place! That is generally how my thought process goes. At university, it feels like you have more freedom to feel your way; it’s expected, and you’ll be guided.
7. The Only Time
University is likely to be the only time where you can legitimately devote 100% of your time to learning without profit; you have days, weeks and years to fill your mind with whatever you choose to fill it with; to learn new skills; to start playing something you’ve always wanted to play and to make new friends. I know it sounds cheesy, but this is a unique time in your life. Don’t waste it.
Obviously, there are things about working full-time that are great, and preferable in some ways to studying. After all, life has to go on, right? I often look back at periods or events in my life and wish I enjoyed them more, never really understanding why I didn’t make the most of them. That’s why I’ve written this post. Go squeeze the heck out of life!