By Robyn Forbes
Holding out for the end of the school year in the spring can really be a trying ordeal, but getting back into the scholastic swing in the fall can be even more difficult. After months of inactivity, relaxation, nonexistent bedtimes and late wake up calls, Netflix, excursions with friends and so on, the mere idea of returning to a structured life and rigid study schedule can be intimidating. It’s even more difficult if you haven’t prepared yourself leading up to that eventful first week. But you’re here now, so here’s how to get back into the swing of things.
Above all else, you must create a schedule for yourself. It is a well-known truth that skillful time-management is the key to consistent success. Even if you haven’t been taking advantage of your time all summer, the first couple of days of school are the perfect time to organize your life. As you receive your first few assignments and course syllabi, you can begin to lay out what the first few weeks of school will look like. Pick up a planner at your local office supply store or use an app on your phone to map out due dates, deadlines, and all the other obligations you have and are aware of so far so that you can maximize your time and get everything done.
Make sure you allot yourself time to study each day. Coming back to a routine of homework and projects after a long period of idleness can be like creating a mental tsunami for yourself. You’ll most likely end up feeling exhausted early on and not accomplishing anything. Studying on a consistent basis from the beginning of the school year, before you have a test on the horizon, can help you ease your way into handling your studies and make you feel more comfortable with tackling schoolwork. It’s something like doing cardio before running a marathon.
It’s also important to have expectations for yourself—realistic expectations. If you have to study at intervals with breaks in between in order to get back into the groove, then do so. Set little goals for yourself each day that will allow you to get to where you need to be at the week’s end. Once you’ve completed your small tasks for the day, you’ll feel more motivated to keep up with those of the days to follow. Having unrealistic expectations of yourself, especially if you’ve failed to prepare prior to coming back to school, will only leave you failing yourself and feeling terrible about it.
Even with setting goals for yourself and scheduling your time, it can still be difficult to get over that feeling of unpreparedness and lack of motivation. That being said, remember to keep looking forward. If you only think about how disorganized you are or how much further ahead you’d have been if you would have planned accordingly in the months leading up to the opening of school, you will continue to feel like you have the underhand. Take charge and focus. Forget that you slacked off and just decide to push forward.
You can use services like Khan Academy to practice skills that may have gotten a bit rusty over the summer, or watch tutorials to sharpen your understanding of certain subjects. Look at your class schedule and select the classes that you know you’re good at and just begin by completing the assignments for those classes. You’ll feel good about having done something you like and having done it well, and it’ll make focusing on the rest of the school situation a bit easier.
Lastly, let us not forget that seeing is believing. Visualisation is very important. Do what you can to get yourself in order materially so that you feel more capable of taking on the year. Organize your backpack and run through everything you’ve packed to make sure you have everything you need for each class. Clean up your desk or study area at home so that it’s ready to be used. Clean your room. Pick out and iron your uniform. The little things count, and seeing all of these elements come together will be a cue to your brain that it’s time to focus because school is in session.
It also helps to form study groups as early as you can, or just get into a groupchat with people who you know are motivated students and will motivate you to get on track and stay there. It always helps to get yourself into the swing of things a bit earlier than absolutely necessary, but if you’re just now getting it together there’s no need to fret. There are so many ways to refocus and different things work for different people. But ultimately, it all boils down to this: get your mind right; get your surroundings right, and you’ll be on the right path
Source:: The Harbinger