Early morning alarms. Long lines at the Stone & Leaf Cafe. First-years lost on their way to the Genome Science Building. The first day of classes is upon us.
Whether you’re a first-year or returning for your last semester, the Editorial Board has been there. We’ve survived 20-page-long syllabi, packed lecture halls and the midday rush at Lenoir. With that in mind, here are some of our tips for surviving today, tomorrow and every other day that starts with an 8 a.m.
When you think about being well-rested, I doubt it is the firm plastic exterior of a dorm mattress that comes to mind. Nevertheless, the hours you spend in your twin XL dorm bed are absolutely essential to surviving the throes of college life. My advice is to nap. Frequently. Do not let periodic snoozing prevent you from attending to your coursework or extracurriculars, but do take advantage of your downtime with some well-deserved shut-eye. Major in the science of napping — 20 minutes is the perfect amount of time to energize amid a busy schedule. Napping in 90-minute increments allows you to enjoy the entire duration of a sleep cycle. Get a full night’s sleep, caffeinate whenever possible and when all else fails, nap.
The alarm I set the night before FDOC is the alarm I stick with all semester. The morning ritual I do on FDOC becomes my ritual all semester. Take FDOC as an opportunity to start a healthy routine. Start wearing sunscreen everyday, pack your lunch, do some yoga, brew some herbal tea. Find joy in the simple things that can make your days better. Use the first day of class to set yourself up for a habitually successful semester — not academically, but mentally.
Going back to school isn’t just an activity. It’s a state of mind.
When I was younger, buying a fresh pack of crayons and a stack of wide-ruled composition notebooks made me feel like the embodiment of academia. The pinnacle of preparation. Despite first-day nerves, I felt excited to tackle the new year with my fancy new Target backpack and walked into my new classroom feeling ready to go.