It’s officially moving in weekend! I remember this time three years ago when I loaded my life into the back of my parents Renault Clio and they drove me to Leicester to begin what have been three of the best but most challenging years of my life. Through studying for two years in Leicester and one in Texas, I’ve changed almost beyond recognition from that scared little fresher who spent that first Sunday night three years ago alone and crying in my new room. So, I’m writing this post to share a little of the “wisdom” I’ve gained since then.
It’s ok if you don’t enjoy freshers
You’ve moved away from home for probably the first time, everyone seems to be bonding while you’re struggling to keep up with the in-jokes, and you come down with a bad bout of the freshers flu. All of this while trying to cope with all the new things being thrown at you in your first lectures. Freshers is fun (whether you like drinking and partying or not there’s loads of great things to do) but it’s also tough. Don’t worry if you don’t settle in right away.
Take a step back if you have to
If you’re anything like me, you’ll sign up to a million and one things in your first week because you’re so eager to get involved. Don’t do what I did and leave yourself next to no downtime. Self-care is a lot better than running on fumes and unless you’re superhuman you really can’t cope with two jobs, your degree, being on the committee of two societies, and being a course rep, and running the youth wing of a political party in the East Midlands without your mental health suffering. (I know I couldn’t). Be thoughtful when you commit to things but don’t be afraid to take a step back or ask for help if you have to.
Explore the city
Don’t just go to Shabang every Friday and have the Loaded Dog be the only pub you go to. When it comes to pubs, clubs, bars, and restaurants Leicester has a fantastic variety that you should visit at least once in your three years here. Getting to know new places in the city is fun and will make you feel much more at home. I’ve been lucky to try quite a few curry houses across the city through being a member of the Curry Society which really helped me get to know and love the city. If you need any recommendations for a good cocktail or a great paneer pakora feel free to comment!
It’s ok to make mistakes
Locking yourself out of your room, turning all your white clothes pink, and burning food are all par for the course. Try not to beat yourself up about your mistakes and if you can try and learn something from every time you screw up. Even though I’m about to start fourth year, I still learnt the hard way that my bedroom door locks behind me last weekend. Although paying the locksmith stung, I’ll never leave my keys in my room again!
That’s all I can think of, but if anyone reading this has any sage advice for incoming freshers feel free to share in comments!