Happy People - Photo Credit Jirka Matousek (Flickr)

Happy People – Photo Credit Jirka Matousek (Flickr)

Going to college can be a daunting experience; new faces, new subjects, more freedom and less responsibility. If you had a rough time in school, now’s your chance to make a name for yourself. Obviously what you were in school in school wasn’t working. Try changing everything about yourself.

Change your look- this is the most obvious way to reinvent yourself. Your old, superficial friends will instantly see you as a completely different animal. Studs, tattoos, funky hairstyles and cuts- like TV shows? Great! Incorporate it into your look- get a Heisenberg goatee, wear a Bazinga! t-shirt.

Get the most up-to-date wardrobe- fashion is a risky game but if you’re always on the cutting edge, you’ll win the respect of your peers.

Don’t mix with past friends- they know all your secrets, your crippling self-esteem issues, your fears, anxieties, embarrassing moments (that time you pissed yourself on the trip to the zoo). Ignore them- they’ll only bring your new-you down.

Get a nickname. Fintan doesn’t exactly scream ‘I’m a party animal’; try mixing it up.  Better off making up your own one though, you don’t want to get stuck with your old one.

Become a promoter- people will have to contact you about nights out. Everyone loves these guys. They have all the hook-ups and know where the coolest clubs are. Plus you’ll get free entry if you bring 15 people. Avoid the coke though.

Drink less. The coolest people on campus know when enough is enough. People remember early exits. Also don’t drink that cheap lager. Try a Chablis, indigenous craft beers or a Châteauneuf-du-Pape (people will be impressed when you say it).

If you’re going to smoke, try e-cigs; they come in variety of flavours now. Ever had a kiwi and apple smoke? Now you can– its fruity miasma will captivate those around you in a safe(ish) manner.

Join societies. The happiest people on campus and least likely to be seen as running away from their past are society members.  Get a college hoodie. Everyone wears them and you don’t want to be left out.

You’ll also want to incorporate the new you into your studies. Don’t be afraid to ask your lecturers as many questions as you like. Bring up tidbits of information about your past- you’ll enthrall your classmates and impress your lecturers.

If your degree sounds too pedestrian like arts or accounting, why not dress it up. ‘I’m majoring in the practical application of monetary and financial processing on a firm level,’ sounds like you’re going places other than the dole queue or Australia.

Congratulations you’ve done it- you’ve made a fresh start. All that pain you had before is now gone, released like champagne, spraying its frothy success-juice all over yourself and others. Now that you’ve changed yourself completely, you’re ready to do what it is you set out to do. Hopefully it’s the same thing you had in mind when you were a completely different person.

Seriously though, tomorrow is world mental health day. If you’re having a tough time, don’t think that changing yourself, disregarding your past and who you are is going to be the answer. Talk to your mates. You’re grand.

If you want, there’s a load of places you can visit for more info.

Try Spunout.ie

Mental Health Ireland

Aware

Take Care.