I think it can be said that the fall semester here at Fontbonne has flown by faster than anyone thought possible. There were days that I wondered how I would make it to the end with my sanity in tact. With a schedule that consisted of two 12 hour days, two 10 hour days, one 7 hour day, and weekends full of homework and studio time, there were times when it felt impossible. There were many lessons I learned from this semester, however, that I hope to take with me into the next three semesters I have left.
- Don’t look at the whole semester at once, just get through one class at a time and one day at a time. When I was trying to get through my longest days it was more manageable if I broke it down by what class I had next, how much time I had to relax/eat, and what I had to get done before the next class started. Breaking everything down incrementally helped me keep my sanity and kept me on track with my work load.
- Figure out what your priorities are and go from there. It’s easy to loose track when you’re not sure what to do first, or you’d rather be doing something more fun and exciting. But when you’ve got 15 credit hours, a part time job, and bills to pay, sometimes you have to make sacrifices and decide what your top priorities are. Make a list if that helps. I have made countless lists this semester of everything from my daily schedule to important due dates for projects. It helped me stay organized and that allowed me to sneak some fun stuff in too.
- Make time to take care of yourself. I know it can be really hard to make sure you’re getting enough sleep or eating mostly healthy, but it’s so important when you’re going through the stress of college. The amount of people in my classes that got sick this semester was staggering. And all of them missed at least one day of school because of being sick. If you make time for sleep and make a greater effort at eating healthier, your immune system will have a better chance at fighting off the illnesses that circulate each year and all of that will reduce your stress level significantly.
- Work on that procrastination. Like now. Not next semester, not next week. It’s easy to put off writing that paper or finishing that project later when you’ve got a week or two till it’s due. I’ve always been really good at putting things off until the last minute, and it sucks every single time. So, in the interest of reducing stress and keeping on track, that will be put at the top of my priority list starting now.
I’m sure there were several other lessons that were learned, but these are the big four that come to mind immediately. The important thing is that you take a look at the things you’ve learned this semester and try to apply those things to next semester, or your life in general. There is so much more to learn and it’ll be interesting to see what the new year brings!