3 MORE things to do to prepare for a new semester

Now that our goals are set, our vision boards are made, and we’re thinking about our intentions for 2019, it’s about time to head back to real life and away from winter break. I’m starting my final semester of grad school and I’m hoping this will be my best semester of school yet!

Last January, I wrote a blog post about 3 things to do to prepare for a new semester (read it here!) and really make the most of your fresh start. I enjoyed writing that post and those are three things I actually do, so I decided to write a follow-up post for this January!

{Keep reading for three more ideas to prep for the semester and be sure to leave a comment down below with how you like to prepare!}

There's a lot of pressure to start off the semester on the right foot, but how do you actually do that? I'm sharing 3 of my favorite tips in this post! | 3 MORE THINGS TO DO TO PREPARE FOR A NEW SEMESTER | HONEYBEE JOYOUS

There’s no wrong way to have a fresh start, these are just some of the things I like to do to feel refreshed for the new year! (Plus, you can do these things any time — check out my post about how to fake a fresh start.)

1. Declutter

This is one of my favorite ways to feel refreshed and there’s no better time to go through your desk drawers or your closet than right before classes start. I’m terrible at maintaining a neat and tidy living space, but I’m also very aware that the more cluttered my apartment, the harder it is for me to focus.

Instead of starting the semester in a world of clutter and extra junk, try starting fresh with only the things you know you use, love, or need. Going through the messy drawers of school supplies and old notebooks, or your cluttered closet full of 40 sundresses (oops, that’s probably just me), or your makeup drawers with eyeshadow palettes you never wear can help you not only feel accomplished, but also reduce some of the subconscious stress in your life.

2. Map out major dates

While I use different planners from year to year, my method is usually quite similar. I start by going through the pages of the coming semester and writing in any major dates coming up. These include breaks from school, trips, exam periods, important work dates, birthdays, and more. Then, once classes start, I take each syllabus and write in the major assignments and exams from each class.

Doing all this at the start of the semester can take a long time (especially if you’re as meticulous about color coding as I am) but it has saved my butt more than once in the past. Having the most important dates entered in whatever calendar system you use far in advance can help reduce scheduling conflicts, confusion, and therefore stress.

3. Find time in your schedule for the fun stuff

Since you’ve already gone through your schedule to look at the big important things, you probably have a pretty good grasp on how the semester is going to look. But, there’s still one more important thing to go through. I like to look hard at my schedule and determine the answers to some questions: What will be my busiest day of the week? What will be my calmest? When will I have time to exercise? When should I plan on doing homework? What’s the best day of the week to do laundry? Is there a day I won’t have any time for chores at all? What day can I plan to use for playing catch-up or for getting ahead?

If you’re like me, you’re always busy, but that busyness also means you likely have things pretty well planned out. Being able to be honest with yourself about your schedule allows you to know when you’ll have time for you (and you NEED to have time for you!).

I like to sit down and evaluate this before classes start — make myself a chore chart based on how busy I am likely to be certain days of the week, decide what days are good for getting coffee with friends and what days I’ll have to go to bed early. I usually make tweaks and adjustments quite a bit through the first month of school and then more as the semester goes on, but it’s always easier to tweak an already made plan than to start from scratch once things are already hectic.

Prioritize taking time for yourself and the whole semester might be a bit less stressful.

{What did you think of my ideas? Do you do any of these things? Let me know how you prep for the re-start of classes in the comments! I read and respond to every single one.}

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