Photo by Nicate Lee / Unsplash

Moving Out for the First Time

Wellbeing Sep 21, 2021

Transitioning from high school to a university is demanding, often more so if shifting to a new place. Moving out of home for the first time is a mixed feeling - thrilling, ominous and a little sorrowful all at once. Going independent means a whole lot of new challenges and responsibilities, and tons of questions or doubts popping into one's head.

Am I mature enough to live solo? What type of person will my roommate be? How will I stick to routine and manage my finances? These could be just a few thoughts running inside. But try to relax; most people go through such a phase at some point in their lives. And generally, things do fall into place!

Acknowledge living on your own isn’t a piece of cake.

Hostels and dorms may not always feel like what you initially expect: lots of fun and full of shenanigans. The first few weeks (or even longer) could be hard, but who knows, maybe you start loving it with time and the right company. Just try not to shy out at what comes your way, and you’ll do great.

Make friends!

Living on campus opens up tremendous opportunities for you to connect with like-minded people and make life-long friends. Being in a room full of friendly faces is undoubtedly more fun than living with a bunch of strangers.

Befriending new people may be onerous for a lot of people. How do you strike the balance between seeming approachable and friendly, but not "too much?" What if the other person does not find you interesting enough? All such apprehensions may continue getting amplified if it takes longer for you to meet people you enjoy talking to than you anticipated. Try to ease into the process by little things: even smiling at people can go a long way!

Homesickness is often inevitable.

No matter how emotionally strong you are, you might have to encounter the often inescapable feeling that hits along the way: you miss home or the people back there. Firstly, accept and come to terms with what you are feeling and figure out what helps you cope the best. Facetiming back home, exploring new spots, signing up for student societies, and talking to new people are some things you can try.

Follow proper routines.

At first, having the liberty to do anything you want to instead of the usual nagging might be pleasant. But over time, you may realize the sense of responsibility that follows, especially if you feel that you cannot keep up with everything around you. Often, being occupied with studies and other activities, you can forget to take care of your health. The simple things like eating on time, sleeping enough, doing a physical activity you enjoy, and the like may start feeling like chores. Try to plan your days and stick to your schedule as much as possible. Not only will this impact your health, but it will also make you far more productive.

Sometimes, you may have to compromise.

What if your roommate snores too much, and disrupts your sleeping patterns? Or what happens if your schedules are so conflicting that that impacts how you function? Due to not liking confrontation, you may want to keep things going as they are, leading to frustration in the hindsight. Instead, try to start a conversation, and communicate. Maybe, you can work something out that solves the problem for everyone, and in some cases, you might as well find a new friend. But be broad-minded and open to understanding others: it is certainly not favourable if they are the only ones compromising all the time.

“Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.” ― Aristotle.

Emotional challenges aren't races. Even if everyone else around you seems to be going faster, that doesn't imply there is something wrong with the way you adjust or form relationships. Be patient with yourself, and maybe, you find another home in the place you move to!


Mahad Imran

Freshman at NUST. Tech-savvy and Esports enthusiast. Cares deeply about social empowerment, climate change and student well-being.