Learn and embrace change. For me, September has been so fast paced but it’s also the first month in six years that I’ve had completely unemployed.
Whilst I do feel the office detox, I do also feel the huge dent in my bank account with no income. The reason that I’ve taken a break from working is because I’m embarking on my new journey and heading back to University to complete my Masters. As September often brings changes, this is a month many of us will be off on new adventures; whether this is a new year at school, transition into university or embarking on the doctorate for clinical psychology course. If you are starting a new course, good luck (I really do have pre-masters anxiety right now).
When I knew I was off to do my undergraduate degree, I had this same anxious feeling. It was definitely combined with independence, excitement and freedom but underpinning emotion of mine was anxiety!
For those of you who are feeling the same, my top tips to help in these situations are below:
1) Push yourself out of your comfort zone! For anyone who knew me before I went off to uni, you’ll probably recall a shy girl. As soon as I reached Uni, I realised that I couldn’t hide behind this anymore and that in order for me to enjoy my time at uni and meet new people I will have to socialise. I’m glad I pushed myself as just taking the plunge to go to University and meet new people has made me more confident to speak to a diverse range of people whether it’s students or professionals.
2) Take care of yourself. Your physical and mental health wellness is vital! It’s no different in a new environment, especially if you’re away from home. Uni’s often have support that they can offer and this is so useful if you’re going through a rough patch or just need someone to speak to.
3) Call home for some sanity. Uni really is a whirlwind and for me, it felt like a completely separate world I was living in. When things got a bit too much for me at uni, it was lovely to call my family and friends from home to detach and focus on the rest of the world.
4) Don’t lose yourself. Amidst all the changes that are going on around you, it’s easy to get caught up in a lifestyle that’s not true to you and one that you won’t be able to maintain for long. Realistically, the excessive alcohol consumption and tonnes of sleepless nights really does lose its appeal when you have multiple deadlines and no money left. Make sure that whilst you do enjoy yourself, that you don’t lose yourself. By taking time to do the same things that you loved prior to your course will help you maintain your identity and not just push to ‘fit in‘ with others.
5) Take lots of pictures! (and I mean of everything, including lecture notes – these are super valuable when you can’t find them at a later date or when lecturers only include slides when you attend!)
All in all, change is something that we have to conquer. Without it, we wouldn’t be striving forward towards each of our goals. If you ever feel overwhelmed, remembering these tips can help you in any changing environment. Just remember, you won’t be the first to hate change but you can take your first step to supporting yourself through it.
I wish you all the best of luck for another academic year.