10 Ways to Start the Semester off Strong

1. USE your planner.

         Planners are an essential tool to help keep students on top of assignments, their organizations and other responsibilities. Whether it be a monthly, weekly or bullet planner, writing things down helps us remember and keep track of our busy schedules. Make it fun! Using colorful pens or a layout of your liking can help make writing in your planner a successful step in being a boss this semester.

2. Read the syllabus.

         The syllabus your professor posted online can be a lifesaver when you need help on an assignment, or seeing what is needed for the class. Professors mean it when they say, “Look in the syllabus.” Almost always, the answer to your questions are inside those black and white lines. Save yourself from typing up an email!

3.  Time Management is key.

         It is definitely achievable to make good grades in your classes, be a part of an organization, and even have a part time job. People who do juggle all of these commitments don’t have to be geniuses or magicians - they have time management. Those who plan, achieve. Dedicate a little portion of your day to organize the next day up through the next month. Time flies when you're in college, so make the most of it by managing it wisely.

4. Get a good night's rest.

         College students are notorious for their lack of sleep. Do not let yourself be one of those sleepy people! Be sure to get at least 6 hours of sleep per night, and try to reach 8 hours every single night. Your body needs time to rejuvenate – and running yourself on low battery day after day is not a habit you want to instill during the beginning of the semester.

5. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day!

         Meals are vital to keeping your busy self going all day long. Start the morning off right and eat breakfast. It can be a banana, chocolate chip granola bar, eggs and bacon – whatever food you are craving. Your mind will be clearer, your stomach will not distract you in class, and you will perform better overall.

6. There is no time for negativity.

         Many students have moments of stress, doubt, or even the feeling of “Is this really what I want to do?” and that is completely natural. Don’t let these thoughts or whatever struggles you are faced with get you down. Criticizing yourself is not worth it. Try to think about something or someone you are grateful for in these low moments.

7. Independence sometimes even means leaning on others at times.

         For many of those in college, this is their first time being on their own and gaining the independence they had dreamed of for years. Unfortunately, independence can be difficult and at times leave you lonely. It is okay to receive support from family, friends and loved ones. Being brought up and supported by those who care about you can be one of the most uplifting times during your college days. Soak it in!

8. Make time to have fun.

         Let loose, you’re young! Having fun with friends is not just a good time, it’s healthy. Laughter and being in the presence of friends is healing.

9. But, a night in can be just as special.

         You, a blanket, comfy clothing, and a good movie or Netflix show is sometimes what you need on a Friday night. Although we are at college, not every moment- albeit many of them do - needs to be spent studying. Taking a mental break away from your computer or textbook can set yourself up for better work ethic later on in the semester. Don’t overindulge, but make a little time for yourself when needed.

10. Breathe.

         A new semester can be intimidating. Manage time for yourself, others, and your classes. You’ve got this!