If you're preparing to leave home and start university, there's a good chance you'll be experiencing emotions ranging from excitement to dread. Going to university represents one of the biggest changes you're likely to make during your lifetime, so it's natural to feel nervous and exhilarated, all at the same time.
To help you find your feet, here are a few of the most common worries students have in the run-up to Fresher's Week (and beyond) that can affect their emotional and physical wellbeing and what you can do to overcome them:
Meeting new people
Leaving your school friends behind and being on your own for the first time is a common worry when you start university, especially if you're not particularly outgoing or find it difficult to make new friends. After all It can be very daunting to walk into a room full of people and not know a single soul there. But try to remember all those other people in that room are in the same boat as you - they don't know anyone else either.
Our tips for meeting new people
First, take comfort in the fact that meeting new people may not be as hard as you imagine. A survey by Which? University found 54% of first-year university students say making friends is easier than they expected.
If you have accommodation on campus, start by getting to know other first-years in your block. Try leaving your door open as you unpack, and invite others in as they walk past. Fresher's fairs give you a chance to join groups and societies where you can meet new people who share your interests, so try to take full advantage of them.
Missing your family
Even if you can't wait to start your new life as a university student, there's a chance you'll feel homesick at some point during your first term.
What can you do?
If you find being away from your home and family is affecting your ability to start your new life, Student Minds recommends going back home for visits initially, then slowly reducing the frequency of your visits while you adjust to the change.
If you're too far away to go home as often as you'd like in the beginning, remember that your family and friends are just a phone or video chat away, and that today's technology makes it easier than ever to stay in touch with people you miss. Don't worry about calling them too often, because it won't be long before your family starts complaining you're not calling them often enough.
Coping with stress
Discovering life as an undergraduate is very different from that at sixth form and can be stressful. There are more essays to write, more books to read and at the same time far more distractions than you may be used to. So it's natural to feel overwhelmed while you acclimatise to your new work and socialising pattern.
But if you find yourself struggling with stress, it could lead to more serious wellbeing problems, such as feeling low and depression.
Our tips for coping with stress
Talking to someone about how you're feeling can bring an immediate sense of relief. You could try talking to a friend or a tutor, or contact your university's counselling service for free and confidential advice from professional counsellors and psychotherapists.
Most universities also have a Nightline service you can call for emotional support over the phone or by email, text or instant messaging. Nightline is a student listening service that's open at night and run by students for students - find out if your university has one.
Managing your money
The fear of running out of money is common among new students, especially as many have never had to manage their own money before. Even if you try your hardest not to overspend, it can be easy to become preoccupied with how you're going to manage on your student loan.
Our tips for managing money
If you haven't done so already, create a personal budget that considers how much you have to live on and how much you can afford to spend on things such as accommodation, food, bills, books and transport. This can help you work out how much you can afford to spend on other things such as going out. Once you've discovered your limit, try to stick to it. For more useful tips, read our guide on budgeting.
Above all, the first year of university is about having fun, meeting new people and embracing the new chapter of your life.
How CABA can help
If you or someone you know is feeling anxious about starting out at university or would like any general advice or support, call us on +44 (0) 1788 556 366 or chat to an advisor online 24 hours a day.