Monday, January 23, 2012

Tackling the Upcoming Semester

With my second semester at UMBC starting on Thursday I have been super busy getting everything ready for the new semester. This is going to be my second semester here, which I am really excited about, but I also want to do some things differently.

Last semester I fell into a rut and all aspects of my life suffered. This semester I am going to make a conscious effort keep my well-being and happiness a priority. I wrote a goal post for this semester that will be posted later this week, but I also wanted to write some guidelines for making this a great, successful semester.

1. No procrastinating. When I was swimming competitively I never had much free time so I had to be really efficient with how I used that time. I would never just be sitting around doing nothing and consequently I would usually finish my homework days in advance. Now that I have a lot more free time I keep putting things off and then end up cramming to finish things at the last minute, which leads to lots of stress.

2. Focus on what is best for myself. I am a people pleaser (I don't think that is a word). I will give up things in order to keep others happy. Don't get me wrong here, I am not saying I want to be selfish but sometimes it is better to put ourselves first or else things can get overwhelming. I need to understand that nobody will treat me differently if I want to take a quick nap or go out for a run.

3. Be proactive about stress. Stress sucks. And it can come out of nowhere. Stress is different for everyone but regardless nobody wants to deal with it. For me, a cup of chamomile tea, and a hot bubble bath can cure almost anything. A few minutes reading a good book and getting enough sleep also really help. I want to get in the habit of fending off stress before it happens.

4. Take advantage of what the school has to offer. UMBC is mostly a commuter school so there aren't as many events on campus as most other schools but there are still a lot of really great things going on. I always have intentions to go to some of these events or even just go to a professor's office hours but never actually do. This is the semester to do the things that I know I should do but never do. When I am no longer in college and can't go to free yoga classes I am going to be upset that I didn't go to as many as possible while I could.

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