My first day of being a second-year student in university is looming around the corner. That means massive changes are on its way—perhaps even more so than that during my first year, which is saying something. I remembered feeling so out of place (not to mention sixteen hours away from home by plane) during my first year, with little to no clue as to what the heck was going on or how I was supposed to go about things. And while it wasn’t a complete disaster—thank god—I’d made some crap decisions that resulted in me disregarding my health, social life, as well as stagnated my growth as a human being. I haven’t really developed myself in any way and I was pretty neglectful when it came to self-care. I’ve been incredibly lazy the past year, too, coming up with one excuse after another not to do those things because there are easier alternatives.
I’m determined to stop doing all of the above this year—or, at least, lessen it by a good amount—and so I’ve compiled a list of resolutions of all the things I want to improve on and change my lifestyle in university.
Now brace yourselves because it’s going to be a very long list.
Start the day earlier
When I still went to school, I used to have to wake up at 05:30 in the morning since I live quite a long way from it. And I used to have no problem with it—I’d literally throw my sheets off me as soon as my alarm sounds and get on with my day immediately afterwards, simple as that. But ever since I came to university, I’ve had so much trouble getting out of bed. I think it’s got something to do with the ‘freedom’ that comes with living on your own and being able to do whatever the heck you want (within reason) without anyone berating you for it. You’re your own person now, it’s brilliant!
But laziness is a vice, my friends, and it will not do you well in what will come to pass.
So I’m going to go back to my old ways (the only time I will ever say that phrase in this post) and start waking up half-five again—or maybe six or half-six, if I’m feeling a bit lazy. I’ll probably get more things done this way, too, and considering how busy I’ll be as a second-year student, this will hopefully increase my productivity.
Walk/run as much as I can
Walking and running is one the most cost-efficient forms of exercise a student can do (I have plans to swim as well, after abandoning for several years on end, but it does cost a bit of money). I’ve done the walking bit because it’s easier and it isn’t too strenuous. I walk to town most of the time—it’s only fifteen minutes away, and the location of my new place cut that down to five. I plan to walk to university at least once a week, probably when I have afternoon classes (it’s roughly an hour’s walk from my old place and will most likely double from my new one).
Running is a whole other story. It obviously requires more energy to do and because my body isn’t used to it, I’m going to start slow. I might run up the path that leads to the student neighbourhood near where I live and/or even to town. Not to university, though, because I’ll actually die. Pray that I’ll live through it.
I’ve always had a weird way with money—I blame my constantly fluctuating mood. There are days where I’m compelled to not spend a single pence on anything (including food, which, if you know me at all, is quite the feat). I literally become the cheapest, stingiest person I know to myself. But then others days I can’t help but succumb to material temptation. And after all has been said and done, I’ll be left agonising over my terrible decision. Rinse and repeat.
It’s not like I haven’t been doing any financial planning, it’s just that I wasn’t doing a very good job at it. Granted, I knew I wasn’t going to be destitute or anything, thanks to my parents transferring a good amount of money to my account every month. But that sort of revenue won’t last forever. So instead of being a penny-pincher, I’m going to do three things. Number one, teach myself to be frugal instead of cheap—and, before you ask, yes, there is a difference. Number two, limit my ‘shopping sprees’ to twice a month instead of whenever the hell I feel like it. Number three, [casually segues to the next point]…
Get a job
Depending on my luck and whether or not potential employers would want to hire me with what little experience I have in the working world, this is probably going to be one of the harder things in the list to achieve. I’ve signed up for work and multiple opportunities—both paid and unpaid—both in and out of university with the hopes of bulking up my CV so that it won’t look so sad. I’ve been recruited as an international student ambassador and been called back to return to my previous job as a student caller very recently, but those will definitely be out of the question once I graduate. So I need a safety net to fall back to. I’m hoping I could work in a bookstore or anything book-related, but I can’t afford (hehehe) to be picky, so whatever gets the money rolling in will have to do. So long as it doesn’t disastrously impact my health—both physical and mental—in any way, I should be alright.
Cook (and bake) more
I bought a cookbook early last year with the intentions of actually, you know, cooking. Never happened—I blame my former flatmates for constantly mistaking the kitchen for a garbage dump. Though I’ve never bought that much takeout in my first year, I was way too dependent on ready-made and microwave meals. So, yeah. Cooking will have to be incorporated into my routine somehow; I’m going to learn how to cook healthy shiz. Baking will be more of a hobby. I’ve met so many people who love baking that I kind of want to do it as well. I probably won’t do it as often as they do, nor will the results be as great as theirs, but who knows?
Cut the crap
I meant junk food, crisps, fizzy drinks, and sh*t like that. But I also need to stop waffling about and just get to the point when I talk to people, so there’s that.
Be more organised
Keeps your fingers crossed for me, yeah?
Read and write more, but not just for coursework
I’ve decided that every Friday, which has always been my designated ‘break day’, to be a day where I pick up a book and read for my own pleasure. I’m sticking to e-books for now as I don’t have a lot of book space in my current hall of residence and I don’t think I will ever be up to packing all of it once I need to move out again. As for writing, I’m mostly going to blog as I don’t really have a schedule (other than Top Ten Tuesday) and it doesn’t take up too much of my time.
Stop skipping out on socials just because I’m not in the mood
This applies to more than just socials. Every time I wait until I’m ‘in the mood’ to do something, be it I lose an opportunity to broaden my horizon a bit more. So I’m going to show up to most, if not all, of the events I get invited to and just embrace every moment.
Take more photographs
As a self-ascribed amateur photographer, I really don’t do a lot of picture taking. I brought my DSLR with me and I can count the times I’ve used it with just one hand. So for this, I’m going to a) do a lot more exploring than just meandering around the centre for the 21897328th time and b) take decent shots of wherever it is I end up. It will undoubtedly be pretty—I live in Bath, after all.
This one I’m still a little iffy about, but I’m putting it up here just in case. It’s not that I don’t like vlogging—if anything, I want to do more of it. The problem is recording and editing could take up so much of my time. And speaking as a soon-to-be second-year university student, I’m not sure how much of it I’m going to have—what with coursework, a potential part-time job, as well as maintaining a healthy-enough social life. But hopefully, it will work out in the end.
Indulge in my musical side
I brought my violin with me. And you know what’s going to happen??
Music is going to happen, that’s what!
If there’s anything I need to learn is that I need to stop being so hard on myself. It’s one thing to be ambitious and going after what you want with all you have. It’s another thing entirely to get angry and discredit yourself for not accomplishing whatever it is I want to do on the first go. Things take time. Just because someone else achieves it before you do doesn’t mean you’re a failure. I’ll make it—and I’ll be okay.
If you’ve made it this far into my post, then thank you for reading! Do you have any resolutions that you’re determined to fulfil? Let me know in the comments below.
Until next time,