College life problems


A light-hearted guide to ensure a ‘sukoon-bhari’ metro journey, my fellow DU commuters!

Do you also find yourself scratching your head, armed with a bag on your shoulder and eyes glued to your station’s name on the map as you travel? Then it’s time we address the pain in the “standing abs.”. Let’s figure out how we can bag a seat here (ah, the sacred quest for the coveted throne), and let’s not forget that bagging a seat in the Delhi Metro is more difficult than acing the exams that got you here.

You need to master the art of hovering skillfully around seated passengers. Learn to hover like a seagull, eyeing a discarded fly. Your stances should have a ‘kezual’ yet desperate style, embodying a blend of nonchalance and neediness. In other words, it’s all about lurking in the shadows and waiting for the opportune moment to strike.

While you are on it, make sure you keep an eye on your fellow travellers; a slight shift in their position will cost you an opportunity of a lifetime! In addition to noticing those who you’re strategically placed near, also beware of sudden movements from other commuters; it’s a fierce game of musical chairs, just without the music or fun, or maybe with the automated voices of “The doors will open on the left. Please mind the gap” as music.

Overhear conversations within a 5-metre radius. A casual “I’ll get down at Mandi House” deserves note-taking, or prepare to cling to the vertical pole until Kashmere Gate.

Yeh Khan Market jaayegi na?” means they are going to stand and donate their seat the moment “Agla station Khan Market hai” plays.

What else can come in handy is a ‘lean’. As the metro doors slide open, try adopting a nonchalant pose against the nearest vertical pole, one hand in your pocket, the other subtly gesturing towards an imaginary prize seat. It’s all about projecting an air of indifference while your eyes scream, “This seat is mine.”

To make things work even better in your favour, you need to lock eyes with your fellow commuters, assert dominance, and silently communicate, “I’ve claimed this territory; proceed with caution.” Such subtle power play amidst the ‘metro-seat diplomacy’, will put even the US hegemony to shame.

You can also play smart with your age, just like my dad does. He has decided not to colour his hair black and let the grey locks shine so that he gets to own the ‘senior citizen’ seat.

You can also take inspiration from the omnipresent brave warriors who have the incredible ability to fit into impossibly small spaces just to get themselves a place to sit. With the flexibility of a yoga trainer, they will squeeze themselves into the tiniest inch of space to have ever existed on the planet, all in the pursuit of a seat that may or may not exist.

Before we bid you ‘a happy seating’, remember, bagging a seat in the metro is not just a sport; it’s a survival skill, a rite of passage that will take you places (quite literally). So, navigate the sea of stations and standing commuters skillfully, and may the seats be ever in your favour!

Read Also: A Not-so-Humble Guide to Travelling in Delhi Metro

Featured Image Credits: X

Kavya Vashisht

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There will be times when you will strive for perfection while earning your degree during which you are bound to mess up in some manner or the other. For many students, college is the first time they are responsible for themselves. The road to maturity can be bumpy for some. Okay, most.

Some mishaps can be avoided with a little common sense, but others can only be used as lessons. The growing pains of adulthood are many, but being able to laugh at them in a cap and gown makes them worthwhile.

Here are 10 mistakes that you probably made in the last semester, but need to avoid repeating (because you don’t want to have any “regrets”):

1It’s perfectly fine if you don’t have the answer to questions like, “So, what’s your plan?” You don’t need to respond to your dad’s friend’s second cousin and talk to him about your internship applications or even your academic Not everyone is cut-out for a definite plan and not everything is meant to be precisely planned. You’re allowed to feel lost. You should always strive to have direction, but you should also accept that not every second of your life will have direction, not every moment has to be about doing something for the future, no matter how pressurised you are.

2. However, point 1 does not give you a free pass to be absolutely “clueless’’. It is important to know the difference between being “clueless about what to do” and “still figuring out how to do.” While the latter can be considered healthy, the former isn’t always too.

3. You can burn out on social engagements. Wanting to spend time with everyone is completely understandable. But you don’t need to worry about the fact that you’re not being a social butterfly anymore (because you’re spending too much time with your old friends). In each semester, you reach a point when you’re concerned you didn’t meet enough people. Let me spare you the whining and complaining: you did meet plenty of people, but only a few could stick around. You don’t have to be everyone’s favourite in college. This semester, spend a little less time trying to be everyone else’s favourite and a little more time trying to be your own. That way, you’d be saving a lot more time.

4. Take care of your health. Nothing sets you back from exams, studying, or meeting last-minute deadlines for assignment submission like a nasty cold. When you think you need to sleep, trust that instinct. For those who have joined hostels, your mom isn’t cooking your meals anymore. And while there’s nothing wrong with partying now that your curfew is a thing of the past, there is something wrong with binge-eating fast food every night. Don’t ignore your health just because you’re finally on your own. 

5. Don’t use Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) as an excuse to not attend classes, or not to complete an assignment on time.Your 19th/20th/21st birthday is not the last birthday you will ever celebrate. It is not your wedding. It’s not the day you land the job you’ve been waiting for. You are going to have another birthday next year. So if your birthday party doesn’t go perfectly, it’s fine. If you don’t get to attend a Game of Thrones themed party in Hauz Khas Village, it’s fine. If you don’t get to attend Sunburn even if Jason Derulo is part of the line-up, you should be fine.  FOMO is real, but not real enough to make you miss that internal or not submit that assignment you’d get 10 marks for.

6. Remember that you’re not in high school anymore and that nobody cares what you were like in high school. It’s okay to take good memories from high school with you to college, but make sure to not get caught up in them. If you stay too attached to your high school experience, you won’t be open to everything that your next semester has to offer (this holds true especially for freshers). Don’t focus on what made you “you” in high school.

7. Don’t think it’s uncool to sit in the first row of class. We can all admit that most of the cool kids certainly did not sit in the front row of class in elementary, middle, or high school unless a seating chart-wielding math teacher forced them to do so. If, in the last semester, you looked at most of those students sitting in those spots on their own accord as teachers’ pets, rethink about it: the less distracted you are, the more you register the first time, the less studying you have to do, and the more time you have for your cool college life.

8. Every semester is different. If you had an 8.4 GPA in your last semester, it would not necessarily stop you from getting a 4.2 in the next one. You would need to up your game and address each new semester with a renewed approach. The rules are different in each semester.

9. Everyone is probably telling you right now that these will be the happiest four years of your life. What they probably aren’t telling you is that these will also be some of the worst years of your life. In college, you will feel on top of the world in one semester and utterly defeated in the next. Just try to remember that you’re not doing anything wrong if you’re having a hard time. And before you jump to any conclusions about how much happier everyone else is and how much more fun they’re having than you, sit down and talk to a friend. You’d be surprised to know how many people feel lost and directionless in at least some point in their college careers.

10. As you begin with another semester, it would be wise to leave you with a quote which stands true whether you’re 14 or 41,”For what it’s worth: it’s never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you’re proud of, and if you find that you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start all over again.”- Brad Pitt, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button 


Feature Image Credits: YouthKiAwaaz

Vaibhavi Sharma Pathak

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If you type the words “University makes me” into a google search bar, the predictive text would read- depressed, anxious, miserable, sad, and suicidal. Higher education is a major stressor and most students experience a deep sense of anxiety and discomfort in college.

College life is an over-glamorised concept across all cultures. While Bollywood films portray college as a place where you dress up, drive sports cars and meet the love of your life, American films portray it as four-years of alcohol, debauchery, and fun. Imagery like parties, pranks, bonding, is recurrent in films related to college life. As a consequence of this conditioning, most of us are not prepared for college life. We anticipate higher education to mean lots of fun and freedom with a healthy dose of learning. However, it turns out to be a challenging experience where deadlines, attendance, and scores, matter more than ever.

Most students in college seem to be exceptionally unhappy with how things seem to be turning out. The truth is college life, from its very beginning, sets us up for disappointment. In a rat-race fuelled competitive world, only a few of us are able to make it into our dream college. Those of us who do are disillusioned by how different it seemed from what we had expected it to be; while those who don’t spend a long time fixated on their loss. Once we move out of the initial shock of not being where we wanted to be, the idea of engaging and participating in multiple activities beyond lectures comes forward.  Students are repeatedly told to make the best out of college life; they must seek participation in as many activities as possible. This results in a second rat race of better internships and opportunities that need to be grabbed. More often than not, these jobs are unpaid because of how readily available the interns are. Parallel to this runs the academic perspective where professors simply do not teach in as much detail as school teachers did. College means making your own notes and finding your own explanations.  The spoon-feeding that was encouraged in schools is over and we are supposed to deal with the sudden academic baggage of doing everything independently. This sudden shock of transitioning from school to college, adapting to a completely new environment, making new friends, and learning to become independent can be too much for a lot of us. A lot of students also start living independently during college, which means managing things like health and well-being, waking up on time, cleaning and staying organised and budgeting, all of which become our sole responsibilities.

College is one of the most major life events. It takes us out of our comfort zones and throws us into the deep end of the pool without second thoughts. It is one of a unique life experience but it can very easily turn  difficult one if we are not careful. To expect students to smoothly transition from schools into college without a hitch is completely unreasonable. Parents, college authorities and society at large need to recognise that college is an extremely challenging and stressful phase where students require immense external help and attention. To brush-off the challenges faced by college students is fairly easy, after all, popular culture does not even portray college as stressful. This is another significant reason why college life is so difficult because our expectations from it are very different from what it finally turns out to be. College is that phase when our metamorphosis from a child to an adult gets completed and to recognise its relevance and the challenges that come with it are important. College students are under the pressure to adjust to their new lifestyle, maintain good grades, and excel in extra-curricular activities, along with seeking experiences which would make them employable. This transition is not a cakewalk and mainstream media does gross injustice to college students struggling with the workload and academic pressure by projecting their life as one drunken party-haze. The acknowledgment that college is stressful and requires work is important because this prepares and gives a more realistic image of what college is to school students. More importantly, this allows college students to feel more comfortable in their current state and also busts the myth that their anxieties and insecurities which they had initially thought only plagued them. College is a life-changing experience, but for this experience to be beautiful, peer support, acknowledgment and validation are pivotal factors. They aren’t luxuries that college administration should provide if they so desire, these are necessities that must absolutely be met in order to ensure well-being and happiness amongst the student body.

Feature Image credits: Kinjal Pandey


Kinjal Pandey

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If you’re scrolling down your newsfeed filled with guilt and wondering why this is all you have been doing for the last two hours and/or what you’re doing with your life in general then you are not alone.

With Diwali over, the preparatory leave already underway, admit card distributions days away there are literally no more excuses left to tell yourself, this IS the time to study and the reason to why you still haven’t started depends on just where you are in the course of your college life.


  • First Year
    No semester is harder to study for then your first. Let’s face it recovering from the boards and the trauma of the twelfth grade takes a lot longer than seven months and the first few months of exploring college, taking selfies and socializing doesn’t really help one get into a study mode. Add that to the “it’s okay, it’s just college” thought that has been playing in your head all week and you end up wondering why you aren’t on a road trip with your friends or taking a well-deserved nap considering you have successfully made it to Delhi University (seven months ago)
  • Second Year
    If you’ve had a very successful first year then it’s time for a well-deserved break, kick back and relax you’ll manage somehow or some way. If on the other hand you had told yourself all summer that this will be the year to change things and still cannot get yourself to get out of bed and open your books then you have officially hit a sophomore slump. If all you care about is surviving college for another semester well then you probably know that the concept of backs and failing no longer applies in which case all you have to do is just ensure you show up on the day of the exam.
  • Third Year
    You’ve given up. Having been to college this entire semester just to either give presentations or submit assignments you probably don’t have any desire to go give the exams either. Moreover, if you’ve been convincing yourself all this time that the dedication, hard work and zeal that enabled you to ace the boards more than two years ago will come back at some stage, well it’s your last year and it’s still not back yet so chances are it’s probably gone for good. So just do what you can to get through the next month and count the days till the fest season commences once again!

In conclusion it is officially the time to set an alarm, fix the old coffee machine, open those dreaded books and somehow salvage what’s left of this semester. So stop reading this and start studying if you haven’t already.

Image Credits: 9gag

Shraman Ghosh

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