Tips, Tricks, and Advice on How to Survive College

graduate couple in college

Here are some tips, tricks, and solutions to common issues every new student faces on how to survive college and make it the ultimate experience of your life!

Why Skipping Class Is Easy to Do and Even Easier to not do!

Everyone does it. Some for great reasons, some for easy reasons, and some just because they never wanted to go in the first place. How to survive college starts with these tips for skipping and not skipping class:

  • Pick classes you enjoy – Find classes that make you want to attend, whether it is because you find the subject interesting, the professor inspiring, or because you like learning something new and different. Selecting classes that engage your intellect and curiosity is a great way to avoid the trap of skipping class.
  • Think about what effect missing the class will have – While being able to skip class is a huge perk of going to college, there is something most people forget when they do so. Every class you miss is money spent and wasted. Paying a college to not go to class is a waste of money. With student loans these days, you’ll be paying for laziness for decades to come.
  • Engage your professor/involve yourself in lectures and discussions – The best way to enjoy a class is to engage in the discussions and learn to process and critique the opinions of others in a well thought out and intelligent way. The more you talk and ask questions, the more familiar you become with the subject matter and the more likely you are to want to continue learning, growing, and expressing your opinions to others who can provide feedback and alternative viewpoints
  • Don’t worry about doing it – Everyone needs personal time. There’s nothing wrong with taking the mental health day you need to make sure that you can stick through the next four years.

How to survive college starts with these little time management steps to keep you focused on the ultimate task at hand – finishing college and creating a bright future for yourself!

Balancing Everything That Is Going on Around You on Your Own

A lot of people wonder about how to survive college with everything else that they have going on in their life (work/personal relationships/family/hobbies). How is it possible to manage your time in a way that keeps you motivated and doesn’t burn you out before you have even had a chance to get started? Check out our top time management advice for how to survive college by learning to manage time effectively and in a way that gives you optimum productivity and a stress-free college experience:

#1 Make a schedule and put it somewhere you see every day.
You can purchase large calendars from most on-campus/home office supply stores. Take 5 or 10 minutes each day and evening to look through and familiarize and prepare yourself for the events of the day. This will allow you to better remember your commitments and obligations and keep your from overbooking yourself.

#2 Keep lists of what you need to accomplish no matter how large or small.
Many professional organizers claim that making lists is essential to accomplishing your goals. If you don’t know what to put on your list, start with simple things and let the ball start rolling from there. Make your bed? Check! Brush your teeth? Check! Finish that paper? Check! Talk to your advisor? Check!

#3 Don’t over commit.
Feeling like you can handle anything and everything that you get invited to do is a sure way to overwork yourself and makes it easier to just give up on everything. It is important to figure out where your optimum level of productivity and commitment intersect and make decisions on how you use your time based on that.

student with a backpack near the university

Finding Your Place

Let’s say you learn to go to class and manage your time better but for some reason, it still feels like you are having trouble keeping your head above water. Common reasons for this include:

  • Not being able to connect with people
  • Not understanding coursework
  • Having too much work and not enough time
  • Needing money
  • Fear of teachers and professors

Follow the advice below to get yourself mentally and physically prepared to handle the life-altering experience college can provide:

  1. Don’t be afraid to speak up – If there is something you need, be it money, food, advice, extra time to complete an assignment, changing your major, etc, you need to say something about it. Not doing so only keeps you trapped in the dull and the borning and is in no way conducive to helping you have the ultimate college experience.
  2. Engage your environment – College campuses have so many activities, programs, social events, and resources to help you get everything you need to feel safe, secure, and feeling like a successful student. Talk to your advisors, use the library, sign up for events to keep your mind and body active. Don’t sit around and let all the amazing opportunities around pass you by!
  3. Introduce yourself to every single person you meet – Never be afraid to say hello to someone. Opportunities for anything are always around on a college campus and the more people you talk to the more likely it is that you’ll have the opportunity to try new and different things. This is one of the best ways to grow a network of friends and contacts that could help you further your career and relationship goals.
  4. Try new hobbies – Book clubs, fraternities, sororities, social justice clubs, and more all exist in college. If you aren’t sure what to sign up for then just pick something at random. Maybe you like it and maybe you don’t. The point is that you won’t know until you try and once you do you will have a better idea and understanding of what it is that you actually want to be doing.
  5. Find new ways of entertaining yourself – While partying is a huge part of campus culture, you can be sure of one thing, it gets old fast! Especially if it’s all you are doing. Check out parks and outdoor activities, take a day trip to a city or town nearby, or sign up for an activity that isn’t related to going to college. In this way, you will have something other than standard party conversation to talk about with the people you meet and you will avoid the “burn out” often felt by those whose entire college life consists of one or two activities.
  6. Eat well – Don’t live off of junk food. It is bad for the body and mind. Poor diet comes with its own side effects that could make you miss school, lack the energy needed to focus, and be more costly than learning to cook a simple healthy meal.

While this list isn’t comprehensive, it is a great start how to survive college and achieve the ultimate college experience you are looking for. Everyone’s experience is unique and it is up to you to learn how to survive college in a way that works best for you!

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