First year is arguably the most crucial and daunting year during your university degree (sorry, I don’t mean to scare you!). Despite it not counting towards your overall degree grade, do not be fooled into thinking it’s a time to let loose of the reins, as you still need to maintain focus and a positive work ethic to achieve everything you possibly can out of your first year and set yourself up for success in the future.
I shan’t sugar-coat it for you… there may be times during your fresher’s year during which you may feel overwhelmed or fatigued; sensations which may compel you to give up completely and retreat into a hibernation in your room (yes, we’ve all been there; load up on the doritos). However, fear not, as I have compiled a list of the best 5 books you can read in order to carry you through your less bright moments and maintain your positivity throughout your fresher’s year. I’m aware you may have had enough of extra reading by that point, however, bear with me here as these titles promise a more fun, diverting read, which may result in your epiphany that in turn will get you through to Summer.
1. The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving A F**k by Sarah Knight
Although the title of this book may feel counterintuitive in terms of caring greatly about your academic success, this parody book gives advice on how to minimise the stresses in your life by only investing your time and money into things that you deeply love (although tempting, thou shalt not squander thy student loan). Your degree is (hopefully) something you are passionate about, therefore, the advice in this book should compel you to focus your energy into your academic studies, providing you with a successful outcome. A lot of the stresses during first year will be to do with issues that are very minor, personal worries and with the help of this book, you should learn the art of letting go of the small, insignificant things that your mind chooses to stress over. Doesn’t that sound marvellous?
2. Make Your Bed by William H. McRaven
This book is based on a speech (since gone viral) given by Admiral William H. McRaven during a graduation ceremony at the University of Texas. The speech was centred around the ten lessons Admiral McRaven learned from Navy Seal training, which encourages readers to learn from his same experiences to enhance their lives. As a fresher, little tasks may seem the most daunting, however, with the aid of this book, determination will persist as the ideas of helping others, pushing yourself and perseverance are explored.
3. Burn After Writing: Teen By Rhiannon Shove
This interactive book invites you to ask yourself some of life’s most intriguing and difficult questions. It’s much harder than it seems to sit down and genuinely answer deep questions about our lives, as we haven’t spent much time thinking about what we want. As students, it’s absurdly easy to get wrapped up into a fast-paced life that is controlled by work, social media and money that we forget what it is we are truly here for. This book was designed to have fun with, to discover yourself in a jovial yet truthful way, so, if you allow yourself, this book could enable you to find yourself amid the haze that is first year.
4. The Little Book of Hangovers by Quentin Parker
Although we’re concentrating on working hard during first year, there is no doubt that this is the year to let your hair down and party like year 9s (big up Bacardi Breezers and WKDs… ah, those were the days). After a night of heavy drinking, hangovers are inevitable and it’s safe to say they are one of the most rotten sensations of the human body; especially if you have lectures to attend. This nifty little book is jam-packed full of tips and tricks to try and wave goodbye to your alcohol-induced nausea, which in turn will make your day much more productive. I wish I had found this book sooner, however, for those of you reading this, I hope you will act smartly and buy it ASAP.
5. Student Hacks: Tips and Tricks to Make Uni Life Easier by Dan Marshall
Acting as a sort of manual for navigating first year, this guide book contains the essential life hacks that a student could possibly need, from ways to make your student loan stretch further to nailing revision. A cleverly written book full of wit and insight, you will not regret giving this a read as it will certainly make your student life that little bit easier, which is something we all love the sound of.