Looking back over your last semester or two in college, can you think of anything that you would do differently? Were you diligent in your time management? Were you ahead of the game in your assignments, or did you often find yourself pulling off late nights to get some assignment in?
I know that for myself, last semester was a bit of a struggle. I was particularly lazy in a few areas that really affected the rest of my college experience. I was especially excited with the start of this new year to come back to school because I knew that there were a handful of things that I would do differently. I’m going to share those things with you today.
These habits that I am sharing with you are not just things that I have copied from other people to make another list. These are actually things that I did my Freshman year and are tried and true. I cannot ever express how much better college was when I practiced these things, and I think you will benefit from them too if you tried them!
10 Good Habits to Form in College
1. Do your devotions every day
Especially try to do them in the mornings. One reason for this is because it will help set your focus on the right thing for the rest of the day. Another reason is because you cannot guarantee that you will have time later in the day to do them. All kinds of things tend to come up and it is awfully tempting to go to that basketball game with your friend rather than sit down and have your quiet time with God. Just wake up a few minutes earlier than you usually do and do them before the rest of your morning routine so that you know you will have time and won’t be distracted by other things.
2. Exercise at least a little bit
It doesn’t have to be a super-intense cardio workout that takes three hours. Just take a short walk around campus. Do some stretches. Do SOMETHING. Trust me, not only will it be good for your body after sitting in classes so long and then sitting to study for the rest of the day, but it will also be good for your mind. It helps to clear your mind and relieve stress which any college student needs. And if you aren’t feeling the stress yet but you still want to exercise, did you know you can study and exercise at the same time? WHAT?!?!?
Yes, you can. It takes a bit of multitasking, but it can be done. If you have one of those bike machines, read and bike at the same time. Or walk while you read. Did you know that some workout machines actually have a place where you can put a book so you can read and exercise? Try it sometime, you might benefit from it. And if you don’t have machines, try some strength building stretches or simple exercises that you can read while you do.
3. Eat healthy
This means to lay off the junk food. You don’t have to go crazy in your diet to eat healthy, just be controlled. You probably don't need to snack on that bag of potato chips while you study and you can do without that sixth piece of pizza. Some of these things in moderation is no big deal, but that’s the key: KEEP IT IN MODERATION. And obviously I’m not a dietitian, so don’t base your eating habits off of me. Just be smart and you will keep off the pounds, make it easier for your body to fight off sicknesses, and keep your mind sharp.
4. Keep yourself hydrated
Drink lots of water. Carry a water bottle around with you to remind you to drink. Water benefits your body and mind in so many ways. If you are trying not to eat so much, water can help you feel fuller for a while. It will help your skin and hair look healthier. You will not get sick as easily, and if you do, you will not stay sick as long. Your mind will be able to think more clearly and you will probably get less headaches. Overall, it’s just a good idea and it will make you feel a million times better.
5. Set goals or keep a to-do list
This will help you to keep track of all those things that need to get done and when you need to do them. It is very beneficial for assignments, chores, appointments, and even recreational activities. It will also help relieve stress because you won’t have to be concerned that you are forgetting something if you have it all written down somewhere.
Oh, and put the list someplace that you will remember to look at it.
6. Work ahead on assignments
This is a lifesaver around midterms and finals! Get it all done at the beginning when you have time to do it. I know it will be tempting to play a bunch of board games with all your friends, but trust me when I say that it is much more worth it to spend that extra time at the beginning of the semester doing homework instead. Think in terms of the future, not just the here and now.
7. Clean up after yourself
Especially in your dorm room. You will find that it is much more refreshing to come back after a long hard day to a clean room than one that is trashed. Take a few minutes every evening to pick up those things that you left lying around. Your roommate will thank you for it, too. Plus, you can study better in a clean room! Yay for less clutter!
8. Prepare for your day the night before
Get all your homework together and in your backpack, pick out your outfit, and make your list of things that need to get done tomorrow. This saves a lot of time in the morning and keeps away a lot of stress. Don’t ever have one of those mornings when you scramble to get everything together in the last minute ever again.
9. Get plenty of sleep
This sounds like a joke to a lot of students, but seriously. Try to get at least eight hours every night. You know what this means? You have to work extra hard to get all those assignments done so that you can. Manage your time well. Your body will thank you for it and you’ll find that you can think and process a lot better.
10. Put God First
With all that goes on in college, sometimes it is easy to forget your Father. Keep your heart and mind fixed on Him every day and be thankful for what He has done.
I hope that you find some of these things helpful and let me know which one has benefited you the most! Have a wonderful week!