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5 Tips for Starting the Semester Off Right

Winter Break was great, but it’s time to get back into the saddle. So stop hitting the snooze button, pour yourself a cup of coffee, and make this semester a successful one following these 5 tips!

Know Your Syllabi

The syllabus for each of your classes is your key to having a successful and organized semester. Once you have your class schedule set, read, print, save, frame, build a shrine, anything you need to do to have your syllabus on hand!

The easiest and fastest way to fall behind is to mess up the due dates for assignments and tests, but if you follow along with the set pace of the class, half the work is done for you. But in case you need a little more structure…

Buy a Planner

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for technology. Honestly, I’m pretty sure I walk around with an iCloud floating above my head everywhere I go, and with Siri working alongside my army of apps, you’d think I’d never miss a beat.

But when my mind is working overtime and I can’t seem to remember if I wrote something down in notebook or iCal or iStudiez or Reminders (the list goes on), the cat and mouse hunt can wear me out. With a planner, all my assignments, appointments, test dates, and deadlines are in one place, written in a neat little box.

There’s just something about having everything written down and planned out that calms any stress. I know I won’t miss something if I have it in my planner, so the first thing I do when I get my syllabi is write down everything that’s due on the right dates so I have a plan to follow.

Find Your Study Spot

Where you do your work determines how you do your work, so having a place that allows you to focus is key to being successful. Ideally, a quiet space to yourself is good, but it really depends on what works best for you because everyone is different!

For instance, I can’t focus if people near me are talking, but I can listen to EDM on full blast just fine. Some people need to be in the library while others like the relaxed atmosphere of a coffee shop.

There isn’t one set location that you must study, but wherever you choose should allow you to focus and be productive…and preferably be available 24 hours and equipped with coffee.

Put a Time Limit on the Internet

I always say that if I fail out of college, it will be due to Pinterest. You know what I’m talking about.

You go on there for a little “5 minute study break” and 1 hour later you’re covered in flour from baking snickerdoodle cupcakes while crafting origami flowers mid-yoga pose to relieve the stress you have from thinking about all the work you should be doing…(this may or may not have happened).

So in order to control your inner lurk monster, you have to set boundaries. Set a time aside to immerse yourself in the interwebs, watch a few vines of grumpy cat, shake your head at every selfie that pops up on instagram, have an entire text conversation with the person sitting next to you using only emojis…then power down and put away!

Now your mind can be clear and you can finish all of your assignments without feeling like you live under a rock.

Set a Sleep Schedule

In the end, nothing will get done if you’re exhausted. I know this can be one of the hardest things to stick to in college. Between hours of class, internships, work, clubs, sports, studying, and socializing, there never seems to be enough time to sleep, let alone sleep on a schedule, but it’s so very important to try!

When you are sleep deprived, your entire body is affected. Your memory and ability to process information slows down, your stress levels rise, and your mood can severely drop. It can age your skin and cause weight gain, and even put you at risk for heart problems or diabetes. If all it takes to avoid all that is a few hours of consistent shut eye, then excuse me while I count my sheep!


So happy Spring Semester collegiettes! Let’s all try to make the ride to summer break an easy one!

What’re you doing to get back into the swing of the semester? 

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