Thanks for asking this. I remember feeling this way for long periods of time throughout my life, especially in College.
First of all, it’s apparent you are waiting for external sources to make you happy. It’s an internal journey. I would not count on Happiness coming because of anything in particular. I have seen so many people fight for this for years, and every time they achieve a new goal, there is always a new goal and a new reason to wait for happiness.
Your time at uni is a gift to work on this inside yourself. I think this should be your top priority. For that reason, spend a lot of time with yourself and working on how you think. Remember that what goes on inside your head might as well be going on in front of others. It’s just as powerful. If you find yourself having many negative thoughts and beating yourself up, consider it just as damaging as if you were actually yelling at yourself all the time. It needs to stop. The same goes for sad thoughts and lonely thoughts. Be aware of these thoughts and work on removing them. You may find that happiness is hiding beneath all these negative emotions and thoughts.
I have said this before, but it’s not about “happiness” as much as it is about contentment. Happiness is a very loaded word with a lot of expectations. I think some people view happiness as a state of immense joy and find it unobtainable. Instead, seek contentment. Spend a lot of time feeling content and thankful for what you have. Even the small things are worthy of your contentment. Chances are, you have a lot more than many other people in the world. I would also suggest meditation. Guided meditations are great if you can find some on the topics you are struggling with. At the end of the day, you have to learn to be content with your life and yourself. It’s a hard battle, I know, but it will change everything for you. The answer is within yourself, not other people (and definitely not uni or a house).
I would also suggest talking to someone regularly about this. There is no shame in therapy. Many people talk to professionals. That’s what they are there for. Often times these problems become more and more difficult if you feel alone in them. Yes, the answer is in YOU, but sometimes you will need to express yourself to another person. We all need to feel heard. You may find that a lot of weight will be lifted.
Finally, I would suggest getting in touch with your interests. I had a difficult time in college because I did not feel like I belonged to any particular group. I think this could have been solved, if I had allowed myself to get back in touch with the things I really like. After college, I realized this and have been so much happier. For me it was being okay with the fact that I am nerdy and love nerdy things. In college, I was trying to be cool (and was very unhappy because of it). The good news is, there is probably a group of people at your uni who will make you feel more at home. This could help too. If you haven’t found them already I might ask you this: Are you trying to be someone you are not? Are there things you loved as a child that you have been pushing away because you think your life should change now that your older? Are the people you surround yourself with encouraging the best in you?
If you can allow yourself to be content/proud with who you are, then happiness will come. This is my assignment for you :)