“It just takes some time, little girl you’re in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine, everything (everything) will be alright (alright).” — Jimmy Eat World
“In the Middle‘ isn’t just a Jimmy Eat World track (did I just date myself there?) It’s also where we are in the semester; not quite to spring break, but not budding with the excitement of the New Year either.
February is a tough month, especially if you are taking your first exams for the semester. Don’t be intimidated by the work load you have before Spring Break. You can manage, and here are a few tips to help:
1. Get organized. Now.
- Despite how chilly it is in West Texas, you might be wise to do some ‘Spring Cleaning’ this week. If you haven’t already, make sure that you have marked all of your assignments in a planner with due dates, homework, readings, and events. If you are feeling particularly enthused about organization, color code these assignments.
- Set aside time to do these assignments. If you want to have a worry-free Spring Break, doing well on your first semester exams and assignments is what needs to happen. Each day read the assigned chapters you have marked in your planner.
- Become the expert of the class, so that by the time you’re skiing at Vail, tanning at South Padre, or catching up on your sleep in the comfort of your mom’s house, you’re not going to worry about the exam you took before the break, or how you’re going to pick up your grades before finals.
2. Set Goals
I know it’s not January any more, but it doesn’t need to be New Year’s Day for you to resolve to get things done. Set a short-term goal each week to read X amount of pages or study X amount of time per day. Keep track in your planner, your Outlook Calendar, or even a journal. If you reach your goal each week then treat yourself — a Netflix marathon (don’t act like you don’t know what I’m talking about) or a special dinner with friends. If you set a clear goal with a clear reward, you’re more likely to follow through with your plans.
3. Meet with your Prof
Meeting with the professor should be a calculated decision on your part. Plan to meet with each of your professors at least once before Spring Break. If you don’t understand the material, they can clarify things for you or suggest ways to help you. If you do understand the material, meet with your professor anyway. Let me say that again, even if you understand the material and are not struggling in the class, meet with your professor anyway. Not only will this make you memorable to your professors and give them insight as to your efforts in their class, but it will force you to think about the time you spend on preparing for the course.
You can do this, just get organized, set goals and meet with your professor. Stick to your plan(ner) and you’ll have a worry-free Spring Break. Oh, and just for some added incentive, here are some dates to wrap your head around:
- February 13th is the last day to withdraw from the University and receive partial credit. (That’s today — and it means you would be completely withdrawing from all of your courses and the university. You would receive W’s in all of your courses, but that would not count against your allotted 6 drops in your tenure as a college student).
- Spring Break begins on March 9th (That’s LESS than a month away!) and ends March 17th.
- Mid-semester grades are due on March 20th. (This is literally just a few days after you return from break).
- May 7th is the last day of classes. (Hop, skip, jump … from Spring Break).
And for your listening enjoyment and motivation: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FV-HPOHu8mY