They say that your college years are the best years of your life but sometimes it’s hard to see that when you’re struggling to keep a balance between your assignment deadlines, your social life, your seemingly always empty bank account and staying fit and healthy. We take a look at five skills that will help you survive college so that you can confidently say that your time spent were the best years of your life.
Learn How to Manage Your Money
What would student life be like if you didn’t have to worry about living on a shoestring? Learning to manage your money will stand you in good stead for later life and is one of the most useful skills you can ever learn. There are many tricks to managing your budget, but you have to know how much money you have available first. Many US students opt to take out private student loans to fund higher education, in addition to the government guaranteed loan in order to make ends meet or work part time to bring in some extra cash. With the arrival of app-based banks, it’s never been easier to keep a constant check on how much is in your current account and tools such as prepaid budgeting cards can also help to keep your spending under control.
Learn Basic Cooking
If your parents didn’t teach you the basics of cooking before you left home, now’s the time to learn. Knowing how to rustle up a few simple but nutritious meals will mean that you’ll be able to feed yourself and you won’t have to rely on fast food or expensive takeout. Pasta dishes are quick, easy and nutritious as are fajitas, burgers, and mac ‘n’ cheese.
Set Up a Meal Plan
Yes, we know that sounds boring but thinking about what you’re going to eat in advance and buying accordingly will help prevent those times when you open a cupboard to find that it’s empty. Plus, it will save you a whole lot of money into the bargain. Doing one large shop a week rather than impulse buying or searching out discounted food during the supermarket downshift will help to keep you well fed on an affordable budget.
Learn How to Do Laundry
Another basic life skill that everyone should master is laundry. After all, we all have to wash our clothes. No saving them up for mom to wash when you pay a visit home. Throwing your clothes in the washing machine with no or little thought leads to colors running, sweaters shrinking and your best shirt or blouse coming out looking as though it’s been chewed up and spat out. Take time to work out the programs on your machine, separate clothing before you load it and find somewhere to dry your freshly washed clothes quickly so that they don’t end up smelling funky.
Know When to Go Home on a Night Out
Not trying to be a killjoy, but the truth is it’s all too easy to get carried away on a night out. A few drinks can turn into a few more and then a few more and before you know it you’ve blown your food budget for the week and your next lecture starts in an hour. One way to avoid this is to take out a set amount of cash and when that runs out, head for home. If you don’t think this is a skill now – you’ll pretty soon learn that it is one of the most important skills you can learn.