Welcome back everyone!
As a college sophomore with 2 full semesters already under my belt, I wanted to share a few tips and tricks on how I get ready for a new semester.
- Making space: Whether digitally or physically, I take a few hours to organize my digital and physical spaces before a semester starts. For my phone this involves backing things to Google Photos, deleting old items, and maybe editing my home screen. For my laptop I backup old semesters to my Google Drive, make folders for each of my new classes, and make folders for other miscellaneous items on my desktop. For my physical space, I like to donate old clothes, wipe down surfaces, and put things I plan on using the most in easily accessible locations
- Organizing space: Going along with the first point, after cleaning I like to make organization systems. Along with folders on my desktop to load documents, I also make matching folders for my Google Drive. I then organize spaces like my email and Canvas so I can easily access the new semester’s items. For my physical space I like to have specific folders to hold documents, and other storage systems for items.
- Schedules: I am kind of a to-do-list and schedule fanatic. At the start of the semester, I download all my syllabi and look over them. I then take a large piece of poster board and write down everything that’s due for every class for the next month or two. I keep this poster on my wall or on my desk so I can glance it at it when I need to schedule other things. This has been extremely helpful because I know when I can schedule time off, schedule shifts for work, or meet up with some friends. I then have a small journal where I keep a mini schedule of things I must do in a week. This includes a 5-day calendar of my week and classes/meetings/appointments. Under this small calendar are all the assignments I have due that week. Although this process seems tedious it only takes a few minutes at the start of each week and helps me as the semester goes along. Once the semester gets more hectic, I like to make a sticky note of things I need to really focus and complete on a specific day. This helps me not become overwhelmed and prevents burn out to a degree.
- Aesthetics: As college kids we can’t really afford to buy a new aesthetic for our environments every semester. However, I’ve found that just changing small things can make me feel fresh and ready to go. For my phone I like to do things like washing/painting/decorating/changing my phone case, changing my wallpaper, changing widget icons, removing old reminders and settings new ones, and editing alarms on the clock app. For my laptop I like to: make a Spotify playlist for the new semester, download new apps, change my wallpapers, add stickers to my laptop cover, and edit my bookmark bar, among other things. For my physical space I like to do things such as: wiping/vacuuming/mopping, changing the layout of my room (ex: moving my desk), moving some of the decorations in my room around, and other small tasks. Something that I’ve tried out this semester and really brings a mood boost is having plants around my study area. Things like twinkle/LED lights, essential oil diffusers, or other sensory decorations can also help.
I hope this list has been helpful and you can apply two or things from this list. Let’s have a good semester!