A) Out with the old, in with the new
Try something new and don’t be afraid to talk to different people by conjuring up your inner kindergartner. One of the best things about college is that it offers students the opportunity to meet many young and vibrant individuals. Take advantage of this by joining clubs and taking part in activities that will allow you to interact with a greater variety of people.
B) Be organized
Stick Post-its in places where you’ll see them (like on mirrors and desks) and do not ignore them! Write daily To-Do lists, set up calendar alerts, or create a Facebook event. Do whatever it takes to help you complete your assignments on time, but take some time out as well for lunch with friends.
C) Ratemyprofessors.com is not always right
Do not walk into class on the first day thinking you know everything you need to know about your new professor. Each and every class is different; do not expect them all to be easy A’s. And studying is not overrated; you will see results. Trust me.
D) Watch cartoons with your roommate…at 4 am
I do this with my suitemates every once in a while. Who are we kidding; studying may be necessary but it is rarely fun. Have fun with those around you by playing video games and board games, watching silly YouTube videos, listening to music, etc. Do anything that will help you relax. Besides, think of the bonds you’ll create with your roommates.
E) Find alternate ways to relieve stress (see D)
A little birdie told me that every student is entitled to one free massage per semester. Take a weekend off to explore the surrounding Stony Brook area. Stress can lead to severe medical conditions. It can also cause your menstrual cycle to be shorter or even lengthier than usual. We wouldn’t want you worrying your pretty little head off during this or any semester.
F) Create and follow a routine
You most likely spent your winter vacation sleeping until 1 pm every day. And though you probably do not have an 8 am class each day, you should still consider waking up early. You will get more work done, feel better, and have more time to do things that do not involve reading and note-taking.
G) Hit up the gym
You go once in the first week of the semester and never again. It happens to all of us, myself included. But with all the late night snacks, burgers, slices of pizza, and soda we find ourselves consuming because we “don’t have time,” we will see the effects soon enough. Take time out to actually go to the gym. This is one of the resources Stony Brook offers that many do not take advantage of. And here’s an added bonus: we have a few months before beach season to tone those abs; is there any better motivation than that?!
H) Sweat pants, hair tied, chillin’ with no makeup on
Comfort is key, especially for college students. But let’s be honest: we sometimes abuse how amazingly comfortable it is to go to class wearing a t-shirt, sweatpants, and Uggs. However, with an article of clothing such as sweatpants, work towards moderation; don’t just take advantage of their convenience.
I) Take care of yourself
Your health should always come first. Despite your best efforts, you cannot survive a cold on Ramen and cough drops alone. Visit the Health Center if you are unable to cure your common cold. This might also be a good time to visit the gynecologist; do not disregard bodily issues as they could escalate to something much worse, and sooner than you’d expect.
J) Reward yourself
Read a book that doesn’t require you to memorize an equation. Buy yourself something special. Get a mani-pedi (SBU Red would be nice). Never forget that the most important person is you! Do not let your hectic schedule keep you from “me time.”
K) Consider yourself in a committed relationship with a boo who just happens to be named College
Go to class, keep up with the reading, and stay awake during lectures. Simple, right? Sure, college should be fun. Just don’t let the partying and oversleeping take over your life or put a dent in your GPA. This four year experience comes only once so make good use of it. Before you know it, you will have graduated and become part of the “real world.” And once you get to that stage, you won’t be able to go back.