7 Ways to Quickly Adjust To College As a Freshman

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It’s that time of the year again! And no, we don’t mean the season premiere of Grey’s Anatomy. It’s time to start school and for some, that means starting your first year of college. Although you may be dreading the assignments, tests and professors awaiting you come fall, here are seven tips from current collegiettes to help you transition from high school to college.

1. Make time to exercise

Elle Woods said it best ––endorphins do make people happy! When people are happy, they tend to do better on schoolwork and adjust more easily to a new environment. Believe it or not, exercising will help you feel at home on your new campus.

For Julia Ide, a student at Western Washington University, going to the gym is super important. “Run or go to the gym in the afternoon,” Julia says. “With early classes, you’re not going to want to get up even earlier to squeeze a workout in. Do it after you’re done with classes for the day. It will help you to de-stress and focus on your homework.” After a long day of classes, it will be nice to have the “me time” that you deserve. This way, you can decompress and be #fit.

2. Keep a planner

Another huge part of starting college is learning how to manage your time. With college being so new and exciting, there will be a lot of things that you want to try. However, it’s important to know what you can and cannot handle.

Elaina Steingard, a student at the University of Missouri-Columbia, suggests keeping a planner to help stay organized. “Don’t be overstressed but also study more,” she says. “It’s mental preparation to know that college will be more work but you can’t overwork yourself.” Keeping a planner is great because you can easily flip to a date and see what upcoming tests and quizzes you have. It’s also a great way to prevent from not turning in assignments.

3. Take time each day to relax

College is busy and hectic, and because of that, it’s easy to get stressed out. Whenever you start to feel overwhelmed, take some time relax so you can start the next day ready to kick some butt.

Katie Roberts, a student at the University of Missouri-Columbia, takes 20 minutes out of her day to relax and proposes that incoming freshmen do the same before they start college. “Get in the habit of going to bed earlier, limiting TV time, going on walks, drinking lots of water and having a face cleaning routine,” she says. It may seem tedious, but doing these simple tasks can make or break you during your first semester at college.

4. Learn how to do your laundry

College will be the first time you will truly be on your own. This means that your parents most likely won’t be around to cook or clean for you. Start learning how to do your own laundry, because clean clothes usually give the appearance that you have your life together.

Reilly Tuccinard, a student at the University of South Carolina, made preparations to learn how to take care of herself (and her clothes) early on. “Before I went to college, I made sure I knew everything I could about doing laundry,” she says. “Whites, colors, cold, hot – I made sure I had it down. By doing your own laundry at home, it makes the transition way easier once you get into college and gets you into the routine of actually doing it.” Learning how to do laundry is just one of the skills you’ll need to know before move-in day.

5. Figure out how to study

Learning how you study best may take a few test runs. Studying can be a very individualized thing and there is nothing wrong with that! Just make sure you do what’s helps you because you’re the one that’s going to be taking that intro to biology course.

Something that helped Nicole Bunte, a student at the University of Missouri, was going to the library to do homework. “Going to the library before I went home really helped me stay away from distractions,” she says. Whether your study-spot is the library or the local coffee shop, finding that place before you start college will help you get in the routine of planning ahead, which makes your life that much less stressful.

Related: 7 Ways to Start the School Year Stress-Free 

6. Learn to budget

Another stress inducer that has plagued the broke college student since the dawn of time is, you guessed it, money. Every student should know basic tips to manage their finances. “Learning how to budget is extremely important,” says Hannah Hart, a student at Auburn University. “Use bank apps that offer free financial advising – when you have money in your account, it’s one less thing to stress about.” Budgeting is a scary concept for many collegiettes, but don't fear ––you are not alone! Asking for help is the only way to learn. 

7. Find out who your roommate is

Most of the time schools have university chat rooms where you can either find a roommate. If not, Facebook or email usually do the trick.

Grace Dustin, a senior at the University of Missouri-Columbia, introduced herself to her future roommate before move-in day. “It helps to reach out to your roommate ahead of time so you can get a feel for them and get to know them better before you move in,” she says. Meeting anyone new, especially someone you will be living with, for the first time is always nerve-wracking. By reaching out early, you get to break the ice and feel more comfortable when you come to school.

Regardless of anything else, collegiettes, make sure that you are following a routine that is best suited for you. Everyone is different and needs different things to thrive – at the end of the day, college will be (without a doubt) the best four years of your life!

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