End of Year
You know what time it is, the first year is ending. It was a good ride but it also meant many stressful things arose. This post will discuss my advice about classes, homework, social life, self-care, and moving out. These things are coming up as the semester ends and summer is coming.
I’m not gonna lie; I’m counting down the days left until the end of the semester, which means I also have to keep track of my classes. Even though I’m done with half of my classes, I will still take time to finish them strong. Rather than looking at my classes as a chore, I see them as a time to experience college before summer comes. Doing that may seem extra, but it helps me know what days I need to attend class and how each subject I’m learning corresponds to my final grades. When reviewing your syllabus at the beginning of the semester, look at the attendance policy for each class you take. Some of my classes require attendance in lectures, while others only require attendance in discussion sections. That is how I can know when and what days I have to go to class. Now this may seem lazy, but it can benefit different courses differently. This is also a time to reflect on what is and is not working for you to succeed in your classes. After seeing my midterm grade, I changed how I needed to study in my theatre history course.
Along with my developmental science course, I brought some new study methods to the table to help with my second midterm of the semester. Changing something that may or may not work can help you finish your classes because each professor, ta, and graduate student teaches classes differently. These tips can significantly help your grades and help you complete your second semester strong.
I wish I didn’t have to do homework leading up to finals week, but beggars can’t be choosers. The way that I keep up with the homework I have to finish over the rest of the semester is to make an end-of-year to-do list. This helps me see what needs to be done and what days things need to be done. Over the semester, things sometimes change because of falling behind or going ahead of schedule. I regularly keep my end-of-year to-do list updated daily because of a slight change in the syllabus of some of my classes. You can make time throughout the days and weekends to finish assignments, quizzes, papers, and projects. This can help your stress levels if you get stressed about things like this. I worry about a lot of things, so being able to put in front of me what I need to do before the semester is over helps me out a lot. I understand that this may not be the best thing to do, but trust me, checking those items off your list will be satisfying to make it less stressful by the end of the semester.
If you also lose focus on what you must be doing, try setting a timer or getting yourself a reward. I do this a lot when it comes to stressful times. Even if I finish the most minor task in the world, I still take time to give myself a break and reward myself with something good. You can even make the reward something later in the week to look forward to something in the future.
You can still have a social life, even when the semester is about to end. Even though you might not go out during the dead week, you can still make time to study with your friends. It’s a technique called body doubling when you set aside time to work on your homework, projects, and assignments. I plan to set up body doubling sessions with most of my friends because we have similar and different classes. My people who also like to go out might not like this stuff, but it will help you stay on top of classes so you feel accomplished by the time the end of the semester comes around full circle.
For example, I have two friends who have birthdays during the last few weeks in April. We are making time for them to hang out before we go home. One of the birthdays was my roommate’s birthday, so it gave some of us an excuse to hang out as a small group and just take time to talk, hang out, and do whatever we wanted. You don’t need to isolate yourself from your friends during these last couple of weeks because you don’t need to. They are your college family, and you need to spend time with your family.
Could you do this during these last two weeks of the semester? It is essential not to burn yourself out because you can’t be your best. I do several things to keep up with my self-care. I like to do my skincare, watch tv, color, and write whenever I need to do some self-care.
Regarding skincare, it can sometimes take work to find time because of either being too tired or wiped out after a long day of academics. I do an in-depth skincare routine on hard days but I won’t get into that. I much rather do my skincare in the morning to feel good about the day. I like to wash my face after a long day on campus. Taking care of yourself also means taking care of your body and being able to use it for good.
Generally, during this time, I like to go to my comfort shows like Criminal Minds, Modern Family, and other tv shows. Mostly because I know what is coming, and I’m not surprised. It is good to watch a little bit of tv after you have done a lot of studying and academic things during the day. Though sometimes, if you are like me, you can get hooked on something and never want to stop watching your favorite tv show. I like to set a timer for how long I need to take a break. Afterward, the timer is up. I close out Netflix or whatever app I’m watching something on. This helps me a lot to keep track of time.
Coloring is therapy for me because it calms my mind. I love it and always do it whenever I need to escape the world of screens and social media. I have gel pens of different colors and coloring books with mindful and motivational things inside. Try this because it can get you back in touch with a time when we didn’t need to be entertained by social media and other items. I like this and have been coloring for a couple of years whenever I feel stressed.
Journaling and working on my novel is amazing self-care for me. Writing is also another type of therapy for me. Even if you are not creative in any way, journaling can help you so much. It can help you reflect on the day beforehand, manifest what you want for the day ahead, and an overall way to clear your mind. I do it often because I go through at least 900 different emotions daily. It’s always good to brain dump because keeping those thoughts in your mind can and will drive you crazy. Speaking from experience, it’s always good to let your mind experience the activities from the day. Do this if you think about these different thoughts, and do not let your mind rest with non-toxic feelings.
I’d be lying if I said I was relaxed about moving out of the dorms. Mostly because I got so many more things when I was in the dorms than I did at my house. I’m nervous also because of finals coming up; I’d appreciate it if you could give me advice for that will be in a later post, but I also need to move out at least 24 hours after your last final. I could rant about handling this better, but I don’t want to. One thing that keeps me sane during this stressful time is friends. If anything fails, we can ask each other how exactly moving out will work. It won’t be as stressful as it looks on paper, but I still haven’t been able to go to our floor move-out.
I will spend my summer in my home town, but I plan to do many things during that time. I plan to work as much as possible and earn as much money as possible. I also have summer classes that will be online because I cannot stay up in Iowa City. It’s gonna be weird being back in my hometown for this long, but it will be fun. I also like to make a “summer bucket list.” It’s not an actual bucket list but a fun list of things I want to do before returning to college. I’m gonna be missing this campus like crazy, but I’m gonna be bettering myself to succeed in my second year of undergrad. You should choose whether or not you want to go home and work, hang out with friends and family, or start looking for jobs and internships. I’m gonna use my time to work and do school as well.
It’s still so crazy that my first year of college is almost over. Yet I don’t want it to end. Mostly because I’m gonna miss my friends like crazy and miss the campus so much. It’s also gonna be stressful with finals and moving out coming soon. I hope some advice can help you survive your first year of college. You got this, and thank you for taking the time to read this post. I hope you all have a fantastic day, week, month, and year. Remember, SELF-CARE IS IMPORTANT, and DO NOT BURN OUT EVEN IF IT COSTS YOU A GRADE.