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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Wilfrid Laurier chapter.

What should I do? School only started three weeks ago and I am already behind. There are a few factors that I think are playing into this and I am going to try and understand them and figure out how to fix them moving forward.

The first thing that always throws me off at the beginning of any school year is switching from summer mode to school mode. Whether I was working most of the time or going on adventures with family/friends, my routine was much different from that of school. Yes, there were responsibilities but they were in a much different capacity than they are at school. Having to academically think about multiple classes for most of the day and having assignment deadlines constantly is a lot to manage. Not to mention extra-curriculars and outside activities of my everyday life. I didn’t slack off at the beginning of the term per say but I was not ready to jump right back into things. I am a person who gets very overwhelmed easily, which has a big impact on me and my schoolwork. A new school term is overwhelming for everyone but for someone like me, it is amplified. Once things somewhat settle down and get organized and under control it is not so bad but this year I did not get everything under control on time and a pile started to build. Now, instead of having things spread out to do, I’m doing one thing right after another. I am essentially playing catch up, which is not how I wanted to start the term.

Other than academics, there are other things to life that are just as important. Eating properly, sleeping enough and being physically active are essential, especially when implementing a new routine into my life. I had great plans for these three things at the beginning of the month but I have slowly neglected them, as I’m always putting school ahead of everything. Yes, school is important but I can’t function properly without these key elements. It takes time but a healthy balance between physical/mental health and academics needs to be established. This is how we can truly thrive.

From my struggles this year and in previous school years, I have come up with some ways to get back on track and move towards better academic habits. Once these have been accomplished, it will be easier for me to implement them into a healthy lifestyle.

Go to class

It might feel more productive to do an assignment instead of going to class but that is how I fall even more behind.

Make lists

Write down everything you need to do each day and prioritize it by when it needs to be done. I like to go week by week.

Set goals

I decide what I want to make sure I get done by the end of the day and work hard towards that goal.

Have a good workspace

I like to have a clean and comfortable workspace that is conducive to getting work done. I find that working on campus limits my distractions and helps me be more productive. Going with friends also helps because it is motivation for all of us.

Take breaks

I allow myself to take frequent but shorter breaks to keep my mind active. I find that doing one thing for a long period of time slows my thinking down.

These are the key things that I find have helped me be more productive and efficient in the past. I know that working on them now will help me get control of my current academics and feel less behind moving forward. I just remind myself – small steps every day and trust the process.

Sydney Greenwood

Wilfrid Laurier '24

I'm Sydney and this is my first year as a writer for Her Campus at WLU. I am going to write about topics related to school/academics and mental health and wellbeing. I want other women to know that what they are feeling and going through is valid and that others' can relate. I want people to find comfort in my articles and know that they are not alone. I am in my fourth year of music, concentrating in music education. I'm also working on a history minor. Outside of school and Her Campus, I enjoy baking, arts & crafts and watching true crime documentaries. As well, I love learning new things, whether it's an instrument, a fun history fact or a new hobby.