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Top 5 Things I’ve Added to My Routine That Have Helped Me This Semester

#1 Making a to-do list

Every Sunday I make sure to make a list of all of my tasks for the week, leaving space under each day for unexpected events. I also make an extended list of really important dates, such as exams, projects or appointments. This has helped me feel far less worried about forgetting things and has given a sense of satisfaction when I cross something off my list.

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#2 Being Nicer to Myself

With having a task list, sometimes I don’t meet all of my deadlines, and the feeling of being unproductive or not reaching my goals takes a toll on my mental health a lot. I usually will get very upset with myself and it prevents me from enjoying the rest of my day. I’ve learned this semester that sometimes you need a break, sometimes a few breaks, to clear your mind and become mentally ready to accomplish your assignments. I’ve become more lenient with myself, and thus a lot happier with myself.

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#3 Don’t Skip Lunch

I used to be notorious for skipping lunch in high school to do homework or other assignments. While it was usually as a result of prolonged procrastination, it began to become the norm for almost anything. I always used the excuse “I can just eat at home.” Now, with being remote this semester, I’m always at home and somehow never find the time to eat in the middle of a school day. This usually leaves me feeling lethargic around 5pm, and extremely hungry at 7pm. I’ve recently made it a priority to have a filling lunch everyday, and it has made me noticeably less cranky and more focused.

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#4 Read!!

If my 11 year-old self could see me now, they’d be disappointed in the amount of books I’ve read this year. I once was so obsessed with reading, that the bookstore was my favorite store, and I’d beg my mom to let me roam the shelves for a new series to start reading. Now, with my heavy courseload, I’ve barely been able to make a dent in my 2020 book TBR (to be read). But, I recently reactivated my Overdrive account and have been enjoying reading books on my phone. I find it very efficient because I’m on my phone so much nowadays. It is also helpful because when reading on your phone you won’t have the urge to check social media or the ability to because the book is occupying your screen.

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#5 Keeping Up with High School Friends

Senior year, albeit cut short, was one of the best years for me in terms of forming friendships. I was able to make strong connections with people in all of my classes as well as strengthen the friendships I already had. Going into college, I was worried that I won’t be able to have a connection with anyone like I did with my friends back home. Senior year brought a lot of us together at the perfect time. I had been in classes with many of my now close friends but never really interacted until senior year. Talking to them throughout this semester has really brought me a lot of joy in my most stressed out moments, and has made me appreciate them a lot more.

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Hi :) My name is Kyerra Norton and I’m a first year prospective Computer Science major at WashU. I love reading, writing, cooking, listening to music, hanging out with my friends. I joined HerCampus because of the supportive community of women and the unique stories each person has to share.
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