Staying Organized in College

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Hi there! Today I’m sharing a highly requested blog post: organization in college! College is a very stressful period of time, and staying organized (combined with other things) is essential to reduce as much as stress as possible. Somehow I manage to go to class, do homework, be blogger, have a job, intern for Margaret. be involved in my sorority, be a dog mom, take care of myself, and squeeze in a social life. This blog post contains my tips to staying organized- but just to be clear my life is NOT perfect and I do go through times where I’m overwhelmed and disorganized too. Some of these tips are pretty obvious and you’ve probably heard them before, but this is what works for me!

  1. Printing Syllabi Immediately

    At the beginning of each semester, I print out the syllabus for each class I am taking and read carefully through it. It’s my way of getting acquainted with the professor before meeting them, and becoming aware of due dates. I go through each syllabus and highlight in yellow ALL due dates first. Next, I highlight all of the materials needed for the class in pink. Finally I highlight miscellaneous information that really sticks out to me in blue. After I’m done color coding all of my syllabus, I use this information to continue to my next step: planning and putting stuff into my calendar. I also like to keep each syllabus at the front of each notebook for my classes so I can easily refer back to it.

    2. Using a Planner and Calendar

    Each school year I purchase a new planner to keep all important due dates and events handy. I also use my Iphone calendar and a physical one month calendar. My one-month calendar hangs on my wall right above my desk. That way when I’m doing homework I can look up and remind myself what the month looks like without having to get on my phone! I use my phone calendar to set alarms and notifications for events, and so I don’t have to drag a planner around everywhere. I bring my actual planner with me to class, meetings, and work. I normally like to use my planner when I’m thinking about things I need to get done for the day. I write down my goals for each week, and write specific goals for each day in my planner. That way all of my thoughts are in writing and it seems more achievable. Using all three items to plan may be too much for you, but use at least one method to schedule your life!!

    3. Learning to Say “No”

    So one of the most important ways to maintaining balance in your schedule is learning to turn down things to add to your schedule. Now I’m not saying you can say “no” to things like homework and mandatory events, but it’s okay to turn friends and family down to do your own thing or relax. This also means learning to say “no” to paid opportunities- like babysitting. It can be hard to understand why it would be smart to turn down money, but sometimes your body needs a break and if that means skipping out on a couple extra bucks… it’s worth it! Once you’ve mastered saying “no” you’ll realize that your schedule isn’t piling up like it use to!

    4. Having a Clean Room

    Personally, when my room is neat and clean, I feel like my life is neat and clean. Waking up to a clean room helps me set a positive mood for the day. If my room is messy, It just adds another thing to my to-do list. I keep up with my room by cleaning up as I go through the day, and then doing an overall cleaning/organizing check before bed. Also, I like to make my bed everyday.. for some reason a messy bed really bothers me.

    5. Stop Procrastinating

    One way I try to get things done as soon as possible is by rewarding myself. For example, if it’s Monday and I know I have homework due that Friday, I tell myself that if I finish it before Friday that I can use that time to relax. I like looking forward to free time instead of waiting until last minute to do things and stressing myself out! Also, I know that last minute work is not my best work- so I try to motivate myself to put all of my effort into work immediately so I can give it my all!

    6. Having a Daily Routine

    I’m a creature of habit, and having a daily routine helps me time myself and keep everything on track. I try to do the same activities at the same time each day. Times like Christmas and Summer break really throw me off. Make your own routine, and then leave time for leisure!

    That’s all of my tips for staying organized. Again, these might not work for you but I hope you find what works best for you! Have a great semester and stay organized!

Shelby SwigartComment