5 things you should know before chasing the ‘University Life’

From middle school till high school we get to hear one common phrase from our elders. “Study now, in order to ‘chill’ when you head for University”.

The idea of becoming ‘free’ from multiple disciplinary academics is such a fantasy to all ‘to-be’ freshmen that they believe the prank that society plays on them. Most of us have faced the harsh reality, and have our ways of coping with it. But for those who haven’t applied for University or will be heading for it, here are the things you should know before you dwell into a journey of ‘adulthood’.

1. The Battle to get into a Public University

Right after you finish A levels or HSC, comes the most difficult competition of it all. It often leads to a nationwide swirl every year over the opportunity to get admitted to a public university. While it is an amazing opportunity that you earn for yourself, it is also important to realize that not getting into one, does not necessarily mean that you do not have it in you to be a smart student.

Public universities are not golden gooses and it certainly isn’t the end of the road.

Read more: Where the real pride of Dhaka University lies

There are multiple Universities all across the country which offers you a certificate and scholarships you deserve. So, try not to break down, because you need to save up some energy to deal with quite a lot of adult problems ahead.

2. Choose your major wisely

By now, you should know what you love to do, and even if you don’t, that is also okay. However, try to choose a major or a department you want to genuinely study in and want to enjoy learning.

Read more: Choosing the right foreign university

If you want to study engineering, good on you. But if you want to be a writer or an anthropologist and you end up taking Computer Science and Engineering because you are too afraid of what your relatives might say of you, do understand this, none of them will help you out at 3 am in the morning to finish your assignment which will be due in the next six hours. You deserve the best in the world and you have to learn to fight for it.

3. You need to be present

Whether it is an orientation or a discussion which helps you with understanding the curriculum of your University or your department in details, you need to be there. Once you do get acquainted with everything, right after your classes start, it might be tempting to miss classes since you have been such a goody two shoes all your school life.

You might think you ‘owe it to yourself’ but understand your priority first, then the luxury, my friend. Regular attendance in your classes will not only help you keep in track with quizzes and lectures but you might also be a friendly face to your professor which will help you in the long run. The idea of getting a good grade in your courses is to be present, no matter what!

4. There is nothing called ‘chill time’ in your prime time

Sadly, the idea of having the most independent and free time when you are studying in a University is a lie that parents feed us so that we study more when it is easy to control us.

Of course, when you are in a University, you get to meet new people, hang out more, take time for finding your passion for something you were always interested in such as a part-time job, travel with your friends etc.

Read more: Struggles of an English major in Bangladesh

But it all becomes difficult to handle when you try to adjust all this while you are trying to graduate. This leads up to late night study hours, overeating, anxiety and that is where you really need to unleash the energy we told you to hold onto.

It might be tricky, but it’s not impossible to experience the best of everything with little time management hacks. All in all, enjoy your time but do not let yourself drift away.

Read more: Perils of Graduation

5. Treat yourself!

While you go through the freshmen, sophomore and senior phases of the years you are in the University, you will realize that not all friendships last, not everyone you like will love you back, that society has constructions you wish you knew before, that there are these crowds who call themselves “boro bhais” and they are of no use to you and that is okay.

Read more: 5 Bangladeshi platforms where you can pitch your startup

With all the hardships you may think you have to face, there is also a beam of light which will get you through it all. You need to sleep well, eat healthy, make healthy relationships with people and they do not have to be a handful. Most importantly treat yourself after every accomplishment or failure you may face in life because before anyone else you need to learn to love yourself.

Here’s to figuring out adulthood and much more!

Socially accepted addictions: Addictions we love to pursue

People around us tell us to stay away from all kinds of addiction every day. ‘Don’t smoke. Don’t drink. Or take drugs. Stay away from other addicts.’ And so on and on and on. Here’s the thing though, all the while they are telling us these things, they are also telling us, teaching us to get addicted to other things. Things that apparently are not as dangerous. Things that we are supposed to be addicted to. These are some of the things I’ve listed below:

Tea or Coffee:

Sure, keep drinking tea every hour and you will soon find people staring at you with concerned eyes. But think about it. Why is it that something that can kill your liver a part of our everyday life? Every time you go visit your sweet aunt, tea almost always comes up as a part of the hospitality? Why is it everywhere in our workplaces? How is it that something so harmful can be so ubiquitous? For some odd reason, we always overlook our addiction to drinking tea or coffee. We don’t even see it as a problem.

Okay fine. Yes, I’m fear-mongering a bit at this point. I’m making a big deal out of nothing. I understand. Caffeine-related deaths are not as common as many other causes of deaths. Still, you have to wonder, why though?

By the way, I’ve been writing all this with a cup of coffee in my hand. My second one this evening. The irony is not lost on me. But hey, addictions are addictions because they are fun as heck.

Television:

Socially accepted addiction: addictions we accept 1

I remember when my father and mother used to scold me for watching TV too much. Then they would spend the next three hours watching TV and fall asleep while watching TV. Well, the joke is on them now. I don’t watch TV no more. I only watch quality Youtube videos. Who is laughing now?

Certainly not my grades.

Anyway, TV hasn’t been around for that long in this country. Color TV came to us only very recently in 1980. It may not seem that recent, but in the grand scheme things, it is quite so. In spite of being so new, it has already reached almost every household of the country. There are very few if any, places in Bangladesh right now that doesn’t have a TV and a dish line to provide the people with some sweet Bangla cinema.

Even though I have made conscious efforts to stop watching TV, all I have managed to do is replace one addiction with another. Well, at least I don’t have to get into arguments with my parents about the remote anymore. That’s my little cousin’s job now.|

Sports:

Socially accepted addictions: Addictions we love to pursue
I remember sneaking out of my house to play street cricket with my friends. Yes, it was addictive

Let me tell you a story.

I was hard at work. I was typing away furiously at my computer, trying to get this article done in time. My room was dark and silent. Only the sounds of my fan and my keystrokes were around. My whole concentration focused on the words and ideas I slowly forming into coherent paragraphs. Many things were written, then deleted, then rewritten, only to be deleted for good. Many jokes, many ideas, and thoughts swirling away… and…

Sounds of cheering, screaming, and horns shatter all that in a matter of seconds. What happened? Oh, Brazil won a match.

Okay.

This is some kind of fanaticism. The way we treat sports sometimes seems like borderline insanity. Did you know that a person committed suicide after Argentina losing in the first round? I bet you do. And I bet that if you are a fan of Argentina, you are heartbroken after they lost the chance to progress. But we don’t see sports rehabilitation centers opened up around the country, do we? Of course not. That would be ridiculous. Still, it’s a very prevalent addiction in our life.

I support Brazil, in case you are wondering.

Books:

12 things only a bookworm can relate to-HiFi Public

This may sound strange to some people. You don’t see that many readers nowadays. But I promise you, they are there, hidden under their comfy blankets, sipping coffee and reading away at a speed that you can’t even imagine, the bookworms are all around us. And I assure you, it is indeed an addiction.

Be wary of books. They hold wonders that can enrich you, but also consume you to your core.

It’s weird because all our life, books have been held up as something that you should indulge yourself in. Do it a bit too much though, and you will be lost in a world from which there is no escape. There was a time when all I had were books. I enjoyed them immensely. My parents were proud of me too. They probably used to brag to other parents about how much books I read.

Then came exam time. These books became their worst enemy then. I wouldn’t study. I would just keep reading the same books again and again because it was fun. That’s what I wanted to do. I was addicted.

Success:

Finally, we get here. The apex of socially endorsed addiction. A thing that we are trained from childhood to pursue. A thing that every one of us craves to some extent. That magical thing. Success.

There are a lot of ways I could go about describing how success is an addiction to you. The thing is though, I feel like this aspect of the world has been so talked about by this point that I can add very little to the discussion that hasn’t already been explored in one way or another. So instead, let me tell you another story.

During my HSC exams, I used to study a little bit the night before and then leave early the next morning because the exam center was quite far. At least one of my parents made sure to go with me every day. We would take a CNG. The CNG would drop us off a little bit away from the center and we would walk the rest.

Every morning, I would walk and watch as my fellow examiners would be absorbed into their mobiles, staring at and solving the leaked questions as fast as possible. The questions would leak every day around 30 minutes before the exam and everyone would solve it before going into the exam hall.

That’s fine.

Kids don’t know better, but the parents should

The thing is, they would have their parents around while doing all this. Not one of the parents I saw those days seemed to care about what they were doing. They encouraged and helped their children. They fanned their children while the said children went through the question and books to find the best answer.

The parents helped their children cheat in an exam in hopes of better results.

Success is a drug, and we are all addicts.

Look the bottom line is, these things, hobbies they are all good but when you take them to an obsessive level, it’s bad. Even gaming. I will not get to that point because I love life. But you get the point. Nothing should become an obsession. If you see symptoms of getting obsessed with something then it’s high time you stopped or changed to something different. If you don’t, then at some point in your life it cost you a great deal.