It’s finals time. Here are some tips to help you get through this semester and start the next one on the right foot.
Learn How to Study
I never had to study in high school. Trust me, waiting to learn how to study the night before your first college exam is both difficult and does not work. Be proactive and use the time you have in between classes to find the study techniques that work best for you. Many students like rereading their notes. Some find it helpful to watch online videos about the subject. While, others like rewriting their notes. Find out which study technique works for you before your first college exam. Believe me, it’s so much less stressful!
Manage Your Time
In college you aren’t forced to sit in a school for eight hours. You have a lot of free time and you get to decide what to do with it. Don’t go too crazy binge watching Netflix. Use your time between classes to find a shady place to sit, grab a textbook and get studying!
Don’t Overload Yourself
College is exciting and being able to schedule your classes on your own time is invigorating. Don’t overdo it though. I’m taking seven classes this semester, as a freshman. It’s not difficult, but it’s just so much work. The stress can get overwhelming. Don’t spread yourself too thin.
Communicate with Your Professors
In a class of 300 students your professor will never learn your name. I’ve found that going to the professor’s office hours helps. Even if you’re not having trouble in the class, the more the professor gets to know you, the more willing they are to help you when you do run into issues. Getting to know the professor holds you accountable to be present and helps you feel at ease in such a large class.
Know Where to Get Academic Help
Being in college doesn’t mean you have to stop asking for help. Every college has a writing center and formal tutoring services for most subjects. If you can’t find any tutoring services for a specific class, go see the professor. Find out if they know students doing who are doing well in the class and would be willing to tutor.
Be Open to New People
I know it’s a cliche, but it’s true, college is a great time to make new friends. It is a time in your life when it is okay to talk to strangers. See someone sitting alone in the dining halls? Sit down with them and start a conversation. You never know the great friends you will make until you reach out and meet them!
Getting involved in your school is a great way to meet new people and participate in all your school’s community has to offer. This doesn’t mean you have to get involved in as many organizations as possible, that will only add to undo stress. Find something that interests you. Are you interested in student government and leadership? Try attending a meeting of your school’s Student Government Association. Interested in Medieval Sword Fighting? If there isn’t a club at your school for that (which there definitely should be), then start one!
I’m pretty sure no one actually likes to do it (if you do, please tell me your secret!), but exercising is an important part of staying healthy and relieving stress. If you find extra time on a weekend with nothing to do, go on a short jog around campus. You are not only exercising, you’re also touring the beautiful scenery of your amazing school!
Be Prepared to Feel Overwhelmed
Not all of college is full of smiles and butterflies. You will feel overwhelmed a lot. You will get stressed out. You will continuously ask yourself if you are good enough/smart enough/strong enough to do it all. Guess what? You are! College is overwhelming, but you can handle it. Don’t be afraid to break down when you feel like it’s too much. Remember you can do this. Pick yourself back up and keep going! If you find it too hard or you just need to talk, reach out to a friend or your college’s counseling department.
College is fun! Study and do all your assignments for class, but don’t be afraid to take a weekend off to go out or stay in with some friends! These next four years will be some of the best times of your life.