Starting the Semester Well 101
The beginning of every semester brings many mixed emotions along with it: Excitement, stress, determination, and more. It’s a crazy time where you’re meeting new friends, catching up with old friends, and trying to find a good balance in life as you adjust to your new schedule. In the midst of everything that’s going on, it’s important to have a strong start to your semester so you’re not stressing for the remainder of it.
I just started my senior year, which is simultaneously exciting and terrifying. However, over the last few years, there are a few things I’ve discovered are key for me in having a good year. So here are a few tips from me on how to have a strong start to your semester:
1. Get Organized
To be honest, I cringed as I wrote that. I’m not organized really at all. I like to just take life as it comes and go with the flow. While it can be good to do this at times, I’ve found that every year of college seems to get busier, and therefore I’ve had to force myself to become more organized.
Get a planner, calendar, whiteboard, whatever fits you best. Just have things that will keep you on track, remind you of upcoming events and projects, and prevent your life from being in shambles.
Like I said, life gets crazy. Obviously, you have homework you have to keep up with. But there are also awesome organizations on campus, fun events, and social time with friends you will want to make time for. Trust me, being somewhat organized will make life so such much easier and less stressful for you.
2. “Over-Study” for Your First Exams
That probably made me sound like a complete nerd, don’t lie. But this is seriously something I do at the beginning of the semester that I find to be a huge help.
By “over-study,” I mean that I study a little harder than normal for my first exam in each class, especially if I haven’t had that professor before. Really it’s just diligence to really know the material, making sure not to cram last minute. In doing this, I can normally make good grades on my first exam, which allows me to start ahead. It’s far easier to try and maintain a good grade rather than spending the rest of your semester attempting to bring your grade up. It’s far less stressful as well!
In addition to this, I also know more of each professor’s style in their exams and also more of what they’re looking for. After the first exams, I better know how to study for the rest of them and hopefully don’t have to spend extra time trying to bring my grade up the rest of the semester.
Basically, study well. It’ll make you happy. It’ll make your parents happy. Everybody’s happy.
3. Get Good Coffee
“Mornings are for coffee and contemplation.” (Please tell me you get this reference. If not, look it up). Seriously though, truer words have never been spoken. If you love coffee, you will love it even more in college. If you don’t like coffee … You’ll learn to love it.
Okay, I understand this is a personal preference, but I had to add this in here. I owe my success in college to God, support from my friends and family, and coffee. Coffee is there for you in the highs and lows. It wakes you up in the morning. It keeps you up at night during those times you have to stay up writing papers. It will be your best friend.
Obviously, this is partially meant as a joke. However, it’s actually true that college students bond over their love and need of coffee. I’ve developed deeper relationships through getting coffee with someone. There are many nights where I invite friends over to my house to study. Many of these study sessions include cups of coffee. So buy lots of creative mugs, and get good coffee for those study nights and other times of fellowship.
There are many ways to start the semester strong; it’s different for everyone. These are only a few of my suggestions. Whatever your plan is for a great season of school, go for it. The start of every semester is a new adventure. Embrace it. Own it. *fist bump*