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How to Set Yourself up for Success in a New Semester

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

As this semester winds down, I cannot help but be disappointed in myself. This was by far my worst semester of university, as school was simply not a priority for me. I was working three jobs, in five classes and trying to balance a social life on top of that. This was already difficult enough, and with senioritis creeping up on me I lost any and all motivation for school. I rarely went to class, hardly picked up a book and left assignments to the last minute. If I was supposed to be doing schoolwork but a better offer came up, I did not hesitate to push off the schoolwork and go have fun with my friends.

With this said, I am determined to have a successful last semester. I have set out a plan for myself in order to ensure I put school first moving forward. If any of you were like me and dropped the ball this term, here are some tips for setting yourself up for success next semester:

Develop a Morning Routine

The one thing that I have always done is wake up early, make a coffee and read my book. Whether it is a school book or for pleasure, it is how I enjoy starting my day. This is something that I stopped doing this past term due to lack of time and I plan on reintroducing it to my mornings next term. Keeping a routine is so important as it forces you out of bed and gives you a positive start to your day. Whether it is reading, going to the gym or grabbing a coffee, make a plan for how you want to start your days. I guarantee you will have more motivation throughout the day.

Make Short-Term Goals

Towards the end of this semester, when I could see my work piling up and deadlines quickly approaching, I started making daily goals. Every night before going to bed I would set out my goals for the following day. This included school, work and personal goals, and helped to keep my days on track. I would write down things like “start EN420 brainstorming” or “go to the gym at 9 am”. This not only gave me goals for the day but also allowed me the satisfaction of crossing things off once they had been completed.

Go To Class

This one may seem like an obvious statement, but I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to actually attend classes. I struggled so much with attendance this semester, which led me to be confused and stressed about upcoming assignments and tests. I did not have adequate notes for studying, which meant studying took longer as I had to scramble to learn the things that I missed in class. As someone who has never been bad at making it to class, I really noticed how much harder it was to complete assignments when you have not already had the chance to talk things through with fellow classmates during your weekly classes.

As much as school is important, your mental health should be placed above everything. Going into the winter term, we can expect long, cold days with very little light. This can be a very depressing atmosphere, especially coupled with the stress of school and work. While it is important to get your school work done, make sure you are leaving yourself an hour or so a day for some “me time”. This can be watching a movie with your roommates, going out for drinks with friends or even lying on your bed staring at your wall. Whatever it is that lets you unwind and destress, make sure you leave room for it every day.

Emma Soden

Wilfrid Laurier '22

Emma is a 4th year English student at Wilfrid Laurier University with minors in Global Studies and Criminology. She is passionate about reading, writing and fitness. She hopes to pursue a career in journalism with a focus on sports.
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