Keep Calm and Study On
Tips to get you into the right mindset for university life.
The workload given to you at university can feel like a shift in comparison to the work assigned in high school. You'll likely find yourself studying 3 or more hours a day. Now I know what you're thinking — 3 hours might seem daunting, but I promise you once you read this article, you'll have all the tips and tricks you need to keep yourself calm, cool, and collected while studying.
Tip #1: Plan
The plans you make will always change, but having a schedule and aiming to stick to it every week is a surefire way to settle into good habits. Getting an agenda is the best way to start; make sure that it isn't too big or too small, but manageable enough that you can carry it around all the time. Another option to explore would be a platform that allows you to update and plan your schedule on the fly, like Google Calendar, Microsoft Planner, etc.
Every Sunday night, find some time to sit down with your favorite snack and plan out your week. You should be aiming to make SMART goals for yourself, meaning that they should be:
The first thing you're going to want to consider is your class schedule.
Block out the time on your calendar that you'll be in class, making sure to account for commute time to and from class. Now consider when you'll be studying for each class. It's usually best to split up your study hours, as working for long periods of time can result in a loss of retaining information. Luckily, Brock's orientation programs, including Smart Start, LEAP, and BU101, offer you the chance to learn smart study strategies from the first day that you set foot on campus, so don't miss out on these opportunities!
Make sure that you also prioritize your health and wellness above all other topics on your list, because you need a healthy mind and body to complete your daily tasks. Go for a 5 – 10 minute walk, meditate, watch your favourite YouTube channels, or squeeze in a workout at the gym. Include something that boosts your mood every day to give you the energy you need.
Take the time you need to tend to both your mental and physical health, and don't push yourself too hard. For the second year in the row, Brock University is ranked #1 in student mental health services according to Maclean's Magazine rankings, providing students with endless tools, including 24/7 counselling through our My Student Support Program App. We're here to support you as a student, so be sure to take advantage of the helpful services offered to you.
Tip #2: Know your environment
Now, things really get personal. The environment you like to study in can change from person to person, but can also change day to day, so this may take a bit of self-discovery on your end. Notice how we didn't say "if you know where you like to study"? That's because you may not necessarily like the environment that you work best in; it might be boring, which means there's little distraction, allowing you to work efficiently. Other people, however, need the distractions of a bustling café or music in their ears to get their work done. It really depends on the type of worker that you are.
Keep in mind that you don't always have to work in the environment that you best thrive in, but it's always good to know yourself. When that big paper comes due, you're going to want to find the right place that allows you the space you need to work. Here at Brock, we have a plethora of study spaces, and our library offers quiet and quieter spaces as you ascend its 10 floors! Outside of the library, there are so many unique locations to explore, whether you want to overlook our on-campus pond, or the gorgeous cherry blossom trees!
Tip #3: Nourish your brain and body
This is the tasty bit, as I truly don't think food gets the credit it deserves. We so often take it for granted and glaze over it, forgetting that without it, our bodies wouldn't function. After all — our body without food is like a car without gas!
Having a good source of protein right when you wake up, regardless of whether you're hungry or not, is the key to fighting off headaches and kickstarting your day. You also need to remember to drink lots of water. Carrying a water bottle with an attached straw makes it easier to get the water that you need, and you're more likely to finish the bottle off.
Aim for 3 full meals a day, that include your veggies, protein, carbs, and healthy fats. Brock's dining services are available for you 24/7, and if you'd like a bagel, coffee, or a healthy grab-and-go meal, you can fuel that amazing brain at any time of the day. In any case, the key to a good life is all about balance.
It might take a bit of time to find what works best, but stick to it, and enjoy your future university experience!
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