Our guide to living your best residence life
The Residence Life team share their best advice for living well during your time in halls.
Figuring out how to feed yourself well on a budget can be daunting when you first get to uni. The biggest thing I learned during my time in halls is that the freezer is your new best friend. Not only are there so many quality frozen foods to buy, but it also keeps your leftovers fresh for a long time, and lets you stockpile any good bargains you spy in the reduced section.
Speaking of which, if you’re feeling lazy, there are some great apps now like Too Good To Go, which makes use of leftovers that would otherwise be thrown away. We’re also running cook-along sessions every Monday and Tuesday this term (find out more on the accommodation portal) where you can learn some basic banging recipes that are both healthy and adaptable to your dietary requirements – come along and challenge yourself! That feeling of victory when you’ve cooked your first proper meal makes it all worthwhile.
The best advice my Dad gave me on the day I moved into halls was “don’t just sit in your bedroom!” I forced myself to take up residence in the kitchen with my laptop and chatted to everyone who passed through – soon enough my flatmates started sitting down with me to eat their meals and catch up on our days.
It made me feel so much better, and like I was finally settling into my new life at uni. We can all be a bit socially awkward – especially after a full year indoors! – but at the end of the day we all want to make friends and connect with the people around us. All it takes is for someone to be brave enough to set things in motion. If you’re introverted like I was, be brave, put yourself out there, surprise yourself! I promise it’ll be easier than you think.
Moving into halls is a crash course on being independent, but it’s good to remember that everyone is going through the same thing together. Coming from living at home, I never really had to think much about clearing up after myself or where the next batch of toilet roll was coming from (sorry Mum!)
It was a real learning curve to start doing everything myself. The first time I tried to buy laundry powder I cried in the middle of the shop! There were just so many options and I didn’t have a clue what did what.
The best advice I can give is to be kind to yourself. When things feel overwhelming, have a hot shower and tidy your room. Drink some water and eat some fruit. Go for a walk outside. Most importantly, no matter how big it gets, don’t let the laundry pile win. You got this!