College is a new and exciting experience for freshmen. Lost in the confusion, excitement, novelty, and chaos of that first year of college is the thought of going to the classes you paid to take. It’s difficult for most new college students to remember that the reason for coming to college is to graduate. That’s why I have taken the time to address some of the issues of how we can be better students. Here are some basic steps one can take towards achieving this goal.
The biggest secret to having an academically successful college career is learning to manage your time well. Speaking from experience, I can say that my GPA could be nearly a whole point higher right now if I had learned time management as a freshman. It was a challenge for me as freshman. I missed many a class by sleeping in. I also found myself playing bass and losing track of time. Next thing I knew, it would be noon and I would then remember my 11:00 class.
The key to time management is developing habits. Wake up at the same time every day. Have a routine every morning. I always eat breakfast, take a shower, brush my teeth, and get dressed in that order. This repetition helps me develop a habit. That way, it’s not nearly as hard to wake up in the morning and get to class on time.
A key to being able to develop this cycle is not staying up too late. This is the hardest part for most college students. I believe there are definitely exceptions to this rule, but for the most part, it should be possible to get to bed on time if your time is managed well during the day. There are not a whole lot of productive things you could be doing past one in the morning. That is, unless your classes start after noon, but that’s a different scenario. In any case, you will have to eventually enter the real world where things start in the morning.
Another thing that helps me is starting the day off with caffeine in some form. I usually pop open a soda and drink it on the way to class or get some coffee somewhere. Have a source of wake up juice in your house. It works wonders.
This is all well and good during those warm days, but the time of year when it gets cold, you may be on your own. When I wake up, get on weather.com, and see that the temperature is below 30 degrees, I have the tendency to get right back in bed. Being from Houston, I have an affinity for warm weather and a disdain of cold weather. The best thing for a cold day is an incredibly hot shower. Nevertheless, I still have my struggles.
Learning how to wake up on time is something I’m still learning. It takes a little time to come up with what works best for you, but be encouraged! If I can do it, anyone can.