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7 Tips to Start the Semester Off Right

The beginning of the semester can be daunting and a difficult adjustment. Everything about your daily routine changes and it's very easy to crumble under the overwhelming amount of pressure that's suddenly placed on you again. However, there are measures you can take in order to start your semester off on the right foot to relieve some of that newfound stress. 

1. Get Enough Sleep While You Can

The semester has just started and while we do get thrown into our classes immediately with stacks of assignments, it’s nothing compared to what the rest of the semester will look like. This is your opportunity to get as much sleep as you can before you start spending the early hours of the morning in Cabell library. Cherish your start of the semester slumbers because when midterms and finals roll around you’ll long for those eight hours of sleep.


2. Don’t Forget to Eat

Forgetting to eat meals in college is not a myth. It’s unfortunately very common and can ruin your drive to do anything. Make sure to replenish your body regularly throughout the day to avoid fatigue so you can accomplish everything you need to. Granola bars, trail mix, and fruit are life savers when you find yourself in a crunch for time.


3. Use Your Planner

Don’t let that planner you bought a few months ago collect dust on your desk, break it out and use it! Keep track of your obligations and write down your assignments. Don’t let yourself get behind just as the semester is kicking off.  


4. Map Out Your Days 

When it feels like there aren't enough hours in the day to get everything done, map out your day hour by hour. Jot down your classes, meetings, work schedule, gym time, etc. Anything that you feel obligated to do in a 24-hour period should be written down and marked off as you go. It will motivate you to get everything done in a timely manner and decrease your level of stress.  


5. Look Ahead at Assignments on the Syllabus

The majority of professors include a schedule of due dates for assignments within their syllabuses. Take advantage of that by scanning the assignments early on so you know what lies ahead. This allows you to prepare yourself for larger projects and will help you avoid missing assignments.


6. Get Organized

Start the semester off with a clean slate. Anything that may have gotten disheveled from the time you took your last final in the spring to your first day of fall classes should be reorganized to ensure success this semester.


7. Find a Good Network of People in Your Classes

It’s hard to click with people in the beginning of the semester but it’s important to find at least one other person in your class early on to have your back throughout the semester. Classes are easier to get through when you know someone else that’s going through the same thing. Try to establish these friendships as early as possible to make both of your lives’ easier.


Katie is a freshman at VCU studying mass communications with a concentration in journalism. She loves attending concerts, James Franco's instagram selfies, quoting Will Ferrell movies, and her two dogs Laila and Frazier. You can follow her on twitter and instagram @katiebashista. 
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