The start of the school year is on the horizon and possibly has already arrived for some of us. A new school year means a fresh start and the opportunity for many of us to establish new habits. Think of it as an opportunity to create new year’s resolutions for all things school related. I will go over some of my resolutions for this upcoming school year and hopefully you will share some resolutions too.

Be healthier

Even the healthiest of us can make strides to improve our physical and mental health. Whether it is sleeping, exercising, eating or quitting an unhealthy habit, it is up to you to improve your overall health. Next year I am focusing on eating healthier. As much as eating shawarma multiple times a week created temporary happiness, my body made it crystal clear to me that it was not happy with my choices. Fresh fruits and vegetables can be some of the hardest things to consistently consume for students, as it they are perishable and costly. Scheduling a day each week that you plan to grocery shop can help you always have a supply of fresh fruit and vegetables. 

Plan ahead

Planning ahead is integral for success as a student. Although I think I am already decent at this, there is always an area for improvement. Adding all your assignment due dates and exam dates to your calendar right away can ensure you do not miss an assignment as well as lets you foresee busy periods of your semester. If you have a week where multiple assignments are due, you know to start working on those assignments earlier than you usually would. This can in turn also improve your mental health as you will have to do less last minute cramming and thus lower your stress levels. 

Take advantage of resources available 

I have always been an independent learner and I like to try to figure things out myself, often to a detrimental level. I have never been to a professor’s office hours and rarely go to extra help sessions. These resources have been proven to increase marks and other learning outcomes, but my stubbornness has stopped me from using them. Asking for help and getting extra help is important and many people that use extra help resources have better understandings of the course than those who don’t. From this term on, instead of spending twice the amount of time trying to figure something out by myself I will go and ask for help. Of course there is a balance between asking for help and figuring things out yourself, but like myself many students have not reached that balance. 

Create a better school/life balance

Finding a balance between school and friends/fun is important to make university both a fun and educational experience. Personally, I have spent too much time on school and not enough on my social life. However, being on the other side of the spectrum and spending too much time socializing can be just as detrimental. Try to set a goal for how much time you would like to spend on social activities a week. 

You should strive to improve yourself with every opportunity that is presented to you. Each new school year is like a fresh slate where you can demonstrate your personal and educational improvements. Developing new habits is an important step to creating a happier and more successful you!

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