So we have two weeks left until break is over. 

No wait…one week.

Oh no… It’s actually a handful of days until we all return to the white capped mountains and soon-to-be-opened text books.

While the energy of a new year is exciting, going back to school is not easy when you haven’t needed to know what day of the week it is for a month. The days of binge-watching Netflix and having a room to yourself are coming to an end. But since going back to school is inevitable, now is the time to set yourself up for a successful semester.

Need help conquering a new year and new semester? Here are ways I find motivation and stay on the path to success:  

1. Take some time for yourself

Returning to campus can be a mental challenge. You are worried that the stress of school, work, and a social life could resurface at any moment. Use this time to reflect on yourself.

Think about how you want to handle your stress, maybe eating the entire pack of Oreos the night before a big exam is not the way to go this semester.

I plan my schedule with time for yoga in mind. The 8pm class at the HLC is the perfect time to unwind from my day and have a positive mindset for the next.

2. Set Tangible Goals

Yet another time I bring up goals. However, returning to your goals ensures you accomplish them and goal setting at the beginning of the year and semester is the best time to lay out specific aspirations for the next 15 weeks. Check out the blog we wrote last semester on how to create little goals that lead to big ones.

I outlined my goals for this semester in a word document calendar. Placing a goal on a specific week allows me to plan for the future and use my time wisely.

3. Plan Ahead

Strategizing for the upcoming semester will put your mind in the right setting for Spring 2017. Where are you going to study? Do you have time to hit the Union before classes or do you need to pack a lunch?

My planner is my best friend when determining my strategy. I see what time I have for studying or grabbing lunch with friends. Being conscious of my schedule settles my mind in terms of what I am going to be doing in a couple of days.

4. List off what you want to do the first, second, and third week of school

With your responsibilities laid out week by week, you will be more likely to get each one done because you won’t be overwhelmed.

My first week entails applying to one internship. The second week is planning out the next couple of months for my assignments. Week three has my work, clubs, internships, and class commitments detailed.

5. Commit to certain amount of time for each task

Next to each task, write down the amount of time you will work on it each day. By scheduling out your duties and making each section of time manageable, you won’t procrastinate until the last day. The five minute to one-hour blocks for each task will fly by.

On my planner, I wrote down 15 minutes a day working on my internship application. I don’t drag my feet on the essay because I know 15 minutes will be over before I know it.

Your preparation for this semester will translate into your career. The organization, time management, and mindful reflection skills will be necessary for any job. The time you are investing in your responsibilities now will likely build your identity capital, which you can leverage in a job.

Everyone has different ways to stay encouraged about school and work. How will you be staying motivated this semester?

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