By Kellie Dietrich
The New Year is quickly approaching as you eat leftover Christmas meals, make plans with hometown friends and enjoy days without worrying about homework. The spring semester will be here before you know it though. Have you taken the time to reflect on what you want to change for 2016? Start the new semester off with a resolution that will help you self-improve by being healthier, having new outlooks or studying smarter. There’s a resolution for every type of student.
For the student who never leaves their dorm room: Be more adventurous
Aim to try one new thing per season. Maybe it’s hiking at a new spot in the fall, learning to ski in the winter, horseback riding in the spring and paddle boarding in the summer. You may not be good at some of the things you try, but you will meet new people and learn lessons along the way. Ultimately, you don’t want a resolution that is impossible to complete. This resolution is doable for those afraid to get out of their comfort zones and also for students on a budget or with busy schedules.
For the student who does anything but schoolwork: Procrastinate less
You have a paper due at midnight and just started it the same day. You’re stress level is at an all time high and you manage to submit it at 11:59 p.m. You feel a wave of relief knowing the paper is submitted, but you feel a pang of disappointment as you see an error on the first page. Know this scenario all to well? Start the paper a week or two before it’s due and write a little every day. It makes those long 10 page papers seem a lot shorter when you’re working on it gradually and the quality of your writing improves as well. You’ll even have time to read over the paper a few times to catch your grammar mistakes and hand it in well before midnight.
For the student who is addicted to their cell phone: Turn it off
You may think this resolution is a joke, but it’s not. You will be amazed at how much more productive you are during a night of schoolwork without your phone. If turning your phone off or leaving it in your room sounds too extreme, you could also make it into a game. Tell yourself you can’t read or respond to your texts until you’ve read ten of the assigned pages. In addition to studying, keeping your phone away in social situations is rewarding to you and whomever you’re with. Your friends and family will appreciate that your attention is 100 percent on them and you’ll be able to enjoy those little moments without distractions. Your phone’s battery will thank you as well.
For the student who pulls all nighters: Sleep more
According to the National Sleep Foundation, younger adults age 18-25 need seven to nine hours of sleep each night. And if you’re also following the resolution to procrastinate less, getting more hours of sleep will be easy. Sleeping more will help you be more productive and put you in a happier and healthier mood. You may even be able to skip the morning coffee. Plus, who doesn’t love their cozy bed?
For the student who is always at extracurriculars: Make time for yourself
It’s commendable how involved you are on campus from sports to clubs to leadership positions, but don’t forget to focus on yourself too. Work out, go for a walk, browse at the mall or try one of those adult coloring books that seem to be the craze right now. Do something you enjoy to get your mind off everything stressing you out. You deserve “you” time.
For all students: Be nicer
Sure, holding the door for people at the DUC is nice, but who doesn’t do that? Try going a step further. Surprise the person behind you in line by buying their morning coffee. Give your dessert ticket to your friend. Compliment the student that looks a little down today. Ask your classmates how their day is going. All these little things can start a chain reaction of niceness that will make 2016 a much more enjoyable year.
So do you have a resolution or two in mind for 2016? Remember to take it step by step every day. You won’t be able to change your ways overnight. Now enjoy what’s left of 2015 and strive to make the new year your best one yet.