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College Life Hacks to Make this Semester Easier

With the fall semester nearing its midway point, many of us have already mastered our daily routines and schedules that help us get through the weeks easier. We all have our own unique tips and tricks, but there are still some college life hacks that we may never think of exploring until we are given a little bit of a nudge. After all, this change of lifestyle isn’t easy! As a freshman, I am still learning and growing each day to make this process an easier transition. Here are some college life hacks to live by if you’re searching for ways to make this semester run a little bit smoother. 

  1. Take Notes! And Rewrite Them! 

  Taking notes is an essential part of understanding your college lectures. I have found that in some classes, it is easier for me to type them, especially when the professor is talking quickly and it seems almost impossible to keep up by hand. Whether I take notes on my laptop or in a notebook, I always go back and rewrite them! By rewriting them I am engraving the information I took down into my brain. This makes it easier to study and do well on exams! I’ve also found that it helps to outline the chapter before class, and then go in with a colored pen during class in order to get the most important information to remember (I use red because it stands out the most).  Remember: If your professor chooses to talk about it in class, most likely it’s important! Take the time to write good notes, and rewrite them even better- it’s a life hack that has changed the way I study for and ace my exams! 

  1. Create an incentive while studying!

We have all fallen into the inevitable trap of getting distracted while studying. In our environment, there are distractions floating around us all of the time. For example, our phones, TikTok, and other apps. In order to get past these distractions, we have to set goals for ourselves while studying! I have found that using an incentive to study is a very useful hack. This incentive can be anything you want it to be. Maybe it’s a snack break after 30 minutes of work time, a nap after an hour of work time, or even giving yourself 15 minutes of scrolling through Instagram after working for 45 minutes. Whatever you do, do it with a purpose! Using an incentive can help you stay focussed for the amount of time you set aside for homework and studying, and then relaxed for time not working or studying. 

  1. Use a Planner! 

A planner is an essential tool in organizing your work and time. It is also super satisfying when you cross something off on your list that you finally got done after procrastinating. I split up my planner by each class; this way I am organized and can stay on top of my assignments. After every class session, I write down any specific assignments on the day that they were assigned, and then on the day that they were due. A planner also helps you to stay ahead of your assignments, know what you need to get done, and know what you can ultimately save for later. Using a planner is a great life hack to stay organized and on top of things! 

  1. Get a good night’s sleep! 

Getting a good night’s sleep is an essential hack for college life! Throughout our days, we are constantly running around all over campus. We spend most of our time studying and preparing for our classes, hanging out with friends, going to the library, and eating. By the end of the day, it’s important that you set aside time to get some rest that you couldn’t during the day. Being in bed at a reasonable time will save you a lot of trouble when you  have to wake up the next morning. Having a good night of rest will also keep you refreshed for the next day of more running around! Get a good night’s sleep! Trust me, you’ll be thanking yourself when you have to wake up. 

  1. Pick up a new hobbie! 

As soon as we step on our college campus for the first time, our lives are completely changed. It can be very scary adjusting to a brand new lifestyle, as we come to realize we often miss the familiarity of home. I have found that picking up a new hobby or skill is very useful in making this new place feel more like home! It can be small, like skateboarding, drawing, singing, dancing, painting, writing, or something else! There are always clubs to join and people to meet for you to step out of your comfort zone and begin to enjoy the small and great things about your college campus and experience! 

  1. Keep clean! 

The last college life hack on this list is to keep clean. While sharing a space with somebody in your dorm, it is especially important to stay clean and pick up after yourself. I have also found that it is very rewarding to hold myself accountable in a shared space and to pick up after myself. It is also important to keep your space clean because it creates a better studying environment to work in. Organize your desk often too! Keeping clean is a college life hack that I couldn’t live without. It makes my days run smoother, and I feel more comfortable in my small space each day because of it! 

Isabella Cautero

St. John's '25

Hi! My name is Isabella Cautero and I'm studying journalism at St.John's University in Queens. I love pop-culture, sports, music, movies and so much more. I enjoy playing with my dog in my free time and spending time with my family and loved ones! I'm from Jersey, so my favorite thing to do is go down the shore to my beach house in Cape May!
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