Last summer around this time, I wrote an “Open Letter to My Third Year Self,” a post I really love because it was a good snapshot of my life at the time, and represented the progress I was making as a person.
This year, I decided to write up a list of things I do/need before classes start. I hate the beginning of the year because it doesn’t resemble any normal schedule…and I like routine. These four things help me survive the first few weeks both academically and mentally!
Buy a planner
Y’all had to know that this would be the first thing on my list! But seriously, buy a planner, write in it, refer back to it, take it with you everywhere, I promise it can change your life. If you’re not already savvy with organization, I recommend you read this to give you a few ideas.
Have a Calm Mind
Starting a new school year can give me anxiety sometimes. Like when you first read the syllabus and you see there is a 15 page paper due in December, or just realizing how expensive your textbooks will cost this semester, all the chaos going on can be #stressful. I recommend you just take a deep breathe and focus on what is happening in the current week.
This is always the hardest for me. In the beginning of the year there are so many new opportunities right in your face. This club, that research lab, this volunteer slot, and it is easy to want to do everything. I’m the queen of thinking that I can somehow squeeze everything into my schedule, only to realize that outside of class and work I only have a few grim hours to play with. So, when opportunities arise I first pray about them. I want to make sure that I am spending my time with the correct things and I want the Lord to confirm that for me. So say yes to some things, and say no to everything else. Balance is key here. Remember present > perfect.
Buy these Pens (or something)
At the start of every school year I buy this pack of sharpie pens. I have a thing for making my notes look nice, and assigning certain pen colors to certain classes. It’s just my thing. Find something that is inexpensive and can make the daily grind just a little more fun.
I pray that y’all have a great start to the school and I encourage you to not be so hard on yourself, you’ll be great! I mean, you are the Sun and all.