How to Survive your First Semester in College

Going through your first semester in college might seem like an easy task right? Well, not really. But many of us have experienced the semester burnout which means that at the end of the semester you will be tired and probably won’t want to study as much as you did in the beginning of the semester.

At least that’s what happened to me on my first semester in college. When I started my semester in college, I was super motivated to study and get my assignments done on time and study for my midterms and in the process, my finals. But when I returned from winter break, that motivation to study…or at least part of it was lost.

survive college

So here are some tips to help you survive your very first semester in college!

Having a planner with you is something that will help you schedule the time you will dedicate to your assignments everyday or mark exam dates and project deadlines so that you won’t forget them.

Personally, I sort of overlooked the concept of having a planner. Although on my first semester, I did have a planner, I wasn’t using it much and when I stopped using it, I felt lost and I was forgetting deadlines and I didn’t really have a schedule for my assignments and projects. And that’s how I started stressing out a bit more than I did when I did have a planner. But now that I do have a planner and schedule everything from deadlines to things to remember, I have less stress and more free time!

Of course, don’t expect to follow exactly what you scheduled because something unexpected might come up but by scheduling you will be able to get more stuff done and be more motivated to put a check mark on your tasks.

So, every college course has a syllabus which is available on your college’s website or your teacher hands it out to you on the first or second day of classes. It includes the material that you will be covering during the semester as well as projects and project deadlines and exam dates.

Treat your syllabus as if it was a planner which was just handed to you. Honestly, the syllabus was one of the main reasons why I was organized and survived when I stopped using my planner. I knew when my project dates were due and exams and the material that we would be covering throughout the semester term.

So when you get your syllabus, write down the exam, project and assignment dates and deadlines on your planner, just so you will know how much time and how many days you can spare for each and thus you can organize your time better.

You can keep your syllabus in a binder and have it with you just for you to check from time to time what you’re going to cover and what your assignments are.

Leaving your projects and essays for the last minute is probably the most stressful thing you could do to yourself. Unless, you are one of these people that don’t get stressed out about anything then you’re really lucky.

But for those of you who are like me and you get stressed out about last minute things, LISTEN UP!

Leaving your projects for the last minute is probably the last thing you could do to yourself. Why? Because you’ll do everything at the last minute and in most cases, you won’t have a satisfying outcome because rushing is not always a good idea. You need time to think about your projects and think how you could make them better.

Professors see the same things again and again and they do like something different and something fresh and new every once in a while. So why not do that?

It’s not only a matter of difference but it’s also a matter of time. Getting a project done before the deadline is the most satisfying feeling because you can submit it earlier to your professor and your professor will see that you are a student who likes being ahead of everything. Plus, you won’t have to stress about anything when you finish it and you’ll have a lot more time to concentrate on other things. Like me, writing this blog post right now.

Similar to tip no.3, your studying for the exams should be done a few weeks prior. This way, you will reduce stress and have the time to study at your own pace.

While the above tips might seem like it’s a lot of work and they are depending on what you do, it is really not good to overwork yourself. This is something I learned the hard way, going back to my senior year in high school.

I thought that working all the time would give me the best results. Right? Well not really. It ended up being really tiring and I wasn’t feeling motivated to study at all because I was really tired and sick of studying. That’s what I did on my first semester. I kept on studying and studying until there I didn’t know what to study anymore and after I was tired and didn’t even want to touch my notes.

Although I still do study a lot, I do not study as much as I used to. Trust me on that. But I still have a long way to go.

So what I’m trying to say is that, give some time to yourself. Watch a movie, read a book, listen to music, start a blog *wink wink*, go out with your friends for a movie or food and do something for yourself other than study. It works. Trust me.

Oh and sleep! Let’s not forget sleep.

So, are you ready for college? Well you should be because despite all the homework and deadlines that you’ll have, you will get the chance to meet lots of new people and get involved with the student life as well as live and experience life as an adult now.



One thought on “How to Survive your First Semester in College

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