Me: “Hey, Dylan. How are things going? How has your first week of school been?”
Dylan: “I’m very tired, and four of my classes have assignments all due tomorrow.”
Me: “Have you started yet?”
Poor Dylan. He is starting off his first college semester in the hole and he is about to get a major lesson in Time Management. This week’s lesson for Dylan (and for most of you) is procrastination…yes, already! Things are not going to slow down until Christmas, so the sooner you can devote some serious time to the classroom assignments the better. I realize you are probably not going to knock out the entire assignment immediately after it is assigned, but you can at least start! Spend at least 15 minutes on those assignments each day. Fifteen minutes is not that tough and it certainly won’t kill your social life. But you need to start…NOW! Stop putting it off. Every hour you put it off just adds more stress to your day. Why not spend 15 minutes getting started? And then you can feel great because getting started is the hardest part, and once you get started, you will demolish any sort of stress or discouragement that may set in.
How are you spending your time immediately after class? Do you play computer games? Watch TV? Play basketball? Go to the Student Center and hang out with friends? It is easy to think that the semester is young and there will be plenty of time for school work later. The semester is about to really kick into gear and you need to start establishing your good study habits now.
I know college is meant to be fun, but don’t spend so much time socializing that you are stressed and overwhelmed right from the beginning. I want you to have the most fun in college, but you will soon realize that the fun activities on campus all start later in the evening. Focus your good energy on getting the bulk of your schoolwork done immediately after class and then you can go enjoy those evening events stress-free and make those wonderful college memories.