You college kids are on your own. Leaving home for school is so fun but hard at the same time. Maybe you’ve enjoyed the last few months of freedom a bit too much and need to buckle down. Or maybe you still hang out with high school friends rather than branching out to meet new people. College has many challenges and your success will be determined by how you handle them.
Homesickness: It’s mid-semester and you are ready to go home to your comfy (not twin-XL) bed and a home cooked meal. Homesickness is a longing for the familiar. Your instinct will be to call home or connect with a high school friend. But, instead of looking back, it’s time to look forward. Make you new surroundings feel like home. Find a special spot to study, a cute coffee shop, and connect with the people around you. They are all experiencing the same thing. Stay connected with home, but not too connected. Top tip: Use your calendar to journal your moods. Identify the activities that trigger your homesickness and also the ones that get you out of the slump.
Weight Gain: Have you noticed your pants are a little tighter? Make a few adjustments and you can be back to your normal self. It comes down to moving more and eating less. Choose water over the daily soda or calorie rich coffee. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Try to eat more fruit and vegetables and less pizza and ice cream. These small things can help. Top tip: Use an app like FitnessPal to help you balance your calories in and your calories out.
Less-than-stellar grades: Reality has hit. Midterms have arrived and the grades aren’t as good as you had hoped. It’s time to make some adjustments. Recognize that what you’ve been doing isn’t working and continuing to do the same thing will not get you different results. Identify what needs to change. More study time? Different study location? Attend more classes? Find some adjustments. Top Tip: Reach out for help. Most colleges have tutoring or support centers that can help get you back on track.
Constant Distractions: Community living is full of distractions. There is always someone around. Plus, college kids have lots of unscheduled time so someone is always available to keep you from your studies. It is crucial that you tame the distractions. If your room is hangout central, move to another location when you need to study. Shut off electronics (phone included) for periods of time. Maybe even give up Netflix for a night. Maintaining focus will help you get things done more efficiently. Top Tip: Find a quiet study spot on campus to stay between classes and knock out some homework.
Chronic lateness for morning class: Professors completely understand if you are late once or twice but if it is chronic, when grading time rolls around, you won’t be getting the benefit of the doubt. Being proactive and simplifying your morning routine can get you out the door quicker. Get your books, etc. ready before you go to bed for a quick grab and go. Simplify your morning routine. An easy hair style and minimal primping is a must! Go to bed earlier and set you clock 10 minutes fast. It really works. Top tip: Schedule later classes next semester. That always helps.