A new semester means a clean slate to make ambitious plans and promises to be your best self. Everyone starts off the year with a clean room and a well-curated schedule. If you’re a freshman, you probably expect to make it to all your classes, keep up with course material and be on top of all your work the way you were in high school.
However, we at the Clog know just how hard it is to keep to your promises by the time the first wave of midterms hits, so here are 10 things you should do to succeed this fall semester.
1. Actually go to lecture
Lecture halls are usually full for the first few weeks of class when people are still trying to get off waitlists, but quickly empty out. If you’re one of the people who hands their iClicker to a friend and never makes it to lecture again, we know what it’s like — you aren’t alone, especially if it’s an 8 a.m. class.
2. Eat healthy
The more work piles up, the less time we have to cook and actually make real food. It’s also hard to be healthy when Asian Ghetto is blocks away from campus and Taco Bell is the only place open late at night.
3. Work out
If you don’t have enough time to cook and sleep, when are you expected to work out?
4. Go to office hours
Your GSI can make or break your grade — all of us know this but don’t always manage to act on it. This semester, try to actually go to office hours and understand those weird concepts instead of pretending they don’t exist or stressing about how hard the class is.
5. Hang out with your friends
Everyone has different schedules and eventually it turns from hanging out with your friends to studying with your friends.
6. Get home at a reasonable time
What was the point of decorating your dorm room and setting up a desk if you spend all your nights studying in Moffitt Library instead? If you’ve had to use BearWalk or the night safety door-to-door shuttle in the middle of the night, you know it’s midterm season and you’ve hit rock bottom.
7. Drink enough water
It’s so important to stay hydrated, but so easy to forget when your mind is on other things. Try to set alarms or reminders to drink some water!
8. Have a sleep cycle
No matter how much your Apple Watches and Fitbits beep and buzz to tell you to go to sleep, nothing can make you hit the hay if you haven’t done your homework or studied for your quiz the next morning. Everyone wants to sleep on time and wake up early, but if you’re still awake at 6:30 a.m., at least you can tell people you were up for sunrise.
9. Put an end to procrastination
If your paper prompt was released a week ago and you look at it the day before the deadline, you’re just like us and it’s the worst. Diamonds are made under pressure, but honestly, you weren’t doing anything important all the other days of the week, so all that last-minute stress was for nothing.
10. Keep away from Netflix
Netflix is your best friend and worst enemy. If you’ve made up your mind to stop binge-watching TV this semester, do yourself a favor and block the website on your laptop and log out of your account. It’s so easy to “accidentally” click on a show and find yourself on season three the next week — save yourself while you still can.
If you set goals for the semester, make sure they aren’t unrealistic and can actually be achieved. Set reminders and tell your friends what you’re trying to do so that you’re kept accountable, and know that if you put your mind to it, Netflix and procrastination cannot defeat you.
Contact Mahira Dayal at [email protected].