The Best Cooking Tips For Students

Are you unsure of what to cook for dinner? Tired of making the same meals week after week? Looking for the best cooking tips for students? We’ll review a few simple, yet crucial, tips for cooking as a student. 

Leaving the roost and learning to cook for yourself can be a challenge for pretty much anyone. After all, you’ve likely spent most of your life living at home. And if you were as lucky as I was, you had your awesome mother there to prepare your meals for you most of the time.

But now, you’re in college, possibly living on your own, and it’s time to learn how to cook for yourself. And yes, I know that learning how to cook can seem daunting.

avocado, tomatoes, eggs, mushrooms, spring onions, and leaves

But I assure you that once you’ve learned a few basic recipes and have taken the time to get a bit more comfortable in the kitchen, you’ll quickly start to see how enjoyable (and tasty) home-cooked meals can truly be.

So with that said, in today’s blog post, we’re going to be taking a look at some of the most important tips for cooking as a student.

 

Stock Up On Basic Supplies

It’s obvious to say, but when you’re in a pinch and aren’t quite sure what to cook, cooking can be a headache. But on the other hand, when you have a cupboard or pantry filled with basic cooking supplies, throwing together a quick meal becomes about as easy as can be.

That’s why it’s crucial to stock up on a range of basic cooking supplies. For this, think of shelf-stable foods like dried beans, lentils, rice, or quinoa. Basically, just try to stock up on anything that’s going to last a long time and that can be used in a bunch of different ways.

assorted food in socks

However, going out and buying a whole bunch of cupboard supplies might cost you a bit more upfront. But the fact that you can easily buy these items in bulk, and they’re not going to go bad means that you’ll be saving money in the long run. Plus, you’ll always have something on-hand to cook.

 

Variety Is The Spice Of Life

It’s truly amazing how only a few different herbs and spices can truly liven up your meals. And when it comes to spices, there’s virtually no limit to how creative you can be.

That’s why it’s important to always have a good variety of spices on hand, not just salt and pepper. Some of my personal favorites are garlic powder, cumin, paprika, cayenne, and thyme.

three green leaf potted vegetables

But there are literally hundreds of herbs and spices to choose from. Which means that there are hundreds of thousands of spice combinations you can create by using them.

So don’t be afraid to experiment. Try new and different spices. Taste different cultures. And you’ll quickly see just how true it is that having a variety of spices on-hand can spice up your cooking life.

Bonus tip: many herbs and spices are super resilient and easy to grow at home. So you can even try growing them yourself!

 

Learn From Others

Some people are born with it, while others need to learn. But I assure you, there’s no shame in needing to learn how to cook. And today, with the internet, blogs, and platforms like YouTube, it’s easier than ever to learn how to make new meals and expand your culinary repertoire.

In fact, there are literally thousands of cooking blogs and YouTube channels available that you can learn from. Or, you can always visit your local library or find an online book store to look for a good cookbook. And even if you don’t like following the recipes, having a cookbook on-hand can be a lifesaver when you’re trying to decide what to cook yourself for dinner.

Best Cooking Tips For Students smiling man standing and mixing near woman in kitchen area of the house

Lastly, you can always ask friends or family members to help teach you a recipe or two.

Regardless, the important thing is to learn new recipes and meal ideas. Then, once you’ve made them a few times and have them memorized, you’ll start to see just how easy it can be to whip up a quick meal.

 

Prepare Your Meals In Advance

I’m sure you’ve heard this a million times before, but doing meal prep can be a lifesaver, both in terms of saving you money, as well as making it significantly easier to cook dinner on a whim.

six full clear glass jars on white surface Best Cooking Tips For Students

There’s pretty much no limits as to what you can prepare in advance, but a few of my favorites are homemade soups, chilis or pasta. These can all be made in larger quantities, then portioned out, and frozen for later use.

Then, when dinner time rolls around, all you’ll need to do is thaw out your pre-portioned meal, heat it up, and enjoy the delicious bliss of your awesome home-cooked meal.

 

Saving Money And Eating Well

As a student, I’m sure you already know that it’s all too easy to spend a fortune on fast-food and eating out. Not only is this a complete waste of money, but when you eat out, you’re more likely to eat junky foods that simply aren’t nutritious, like greasy french fries, burgers, etc.

But by following the tips we’ve discussed today, stocking up on cupboard supplies, learning new meal ideas, and doing meal prep, you’ll easily be able to save yourself some money, and learn how to feed your mind, body, and soul in the best way possible.

5 Books To Read During Self-Quarantine

If you’re having trouble getting your mind off the decade’s biggest news story, then you’re sure to love the following list of the absolute best books to read during self-quarantine.  

No matter where you are in the world, I’m sure you’ve felt the same stress and anxiety as we all have. We’ve all been wide-eyed surrounding the recent outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

And while there’s still so much uncertainty in the air, there’s always a silver lining to be found. For instance, there are fewer cars on the road. Fewer crowds in shopping malls and stores. And less pollution is being generated than we’ve seen in decades.

Plus, many of us are finding that we have more time on our hands than ever before. So, what better way is there to spend some of this time than reading?

Today, we’re going over 5 of the best books to read during self-quarantine.

How To Do Nothing By Jenny Odell

There’s no doubt that many of us have trouble sitting still and doing nothing. Especially when we’re being told to stay at home and not going anywhere. So for those of you who are having trouble sitting still, check out Jenny Odell’s How To Do Nothing.

jenny odell on Twitter: "advance copies are here :-o… "

According to Odell, our attention is one of the most important resources we have as human beings.

And by learning how to focus this attention properly, we’re able to take one of the boldest forms of action. How To Do Nothing helps redefine our role in the environment. And leads to a better understanding of progress and happiness.

The Splendid And The Vile: A Saga Of Churchill, Family, And Defiance During The Blitz By Erik Larson

Looking for a bit of inspiration during these hard times? Then look no further than this exciting novel, based on real events, written by award-winning indie author, Erik Larson.

The Book Show #1649 - Erik Larson | WAMC

The book follows Winston Churchill through his early years as British prime minister, taking you into his personal family life. All while he’s dealing with the London Blitz at the onset of the Second World War.

The Splendid And The Vile is an epic saga, filled with fascinating facts and details of a different time than today. But still, it was a time when people were looking for a tinge of hope in some of the darkest days.

The Fifth Season By N.K. Jemisin

As the first installment of a Hugo award-winning trilogy, The Fifth Season is an insightful look at a doomsday, apocalyptical situation.

The novel starts with a “great red rift across the heart of the world’s sole continent, spewing ash that blots out the sun”. Then, the story follows three women trying to survive during the end of the world.

5 Reasons to Read 'The Fifth Season' by N.K. Jemisin - GeekDad

It is both a tragic and thrilling story of people being at odds with the limitations of the natural world. Not to mention the sometimes daring ways that we’re willing to escape it by.

Anagrams By Lorrie Moore

Praised as being “a revelatory tale of love gained and lost, from a master of contemporary American fiction”. Anagrams is a must-read for anyone finding themselves confined to their home in recent times.

Anagrams Audiobook by Lorrie Moore - 9781982631970 | Rakuten Kobo

The story starts out with Gerard, sitting fully-clothed in his bathtub, as he listens attentively for his neighbor, Benna, to flush the toilet. He’s in love with Benna, and as the story progresses, Benna starts to love him back, at least, until she doesn’t.

In the novel Anagrams, Moore takes you into the real and imaginative lives of Gerard and Benna as their relationship gradually intertwines. According to McNally Jackson Booksellers, it’s a “captivating, innovative portrait of men and women in love and not in love.

Station Eleven By Emily St. John Mandel

I should warn you that this next read isn’t for the faint of heart. And it’s eerily similar to what’s currently happening in the world. But, I’m sure that some of you are horror lovers, so I felt this would be the perfect book to top off this month’s list.

Station Eleven: Amazon.ca: Mandel, Emily St John, Chong, Vincent ...

In the award-winning Station Eleven, Mandel takes us into a world devastated by the “Georgia Flu”, a fictional pandemic, which has killed most of the world’s population.

Although the book might be a bit too realistic for some people, upon publication in 2014, it was well-received by critics everywhere and has since won the Arthur C. Clarke award. It’s also been featured on many end-of-year reading lists.

Best Books To Read During Self-Isolation

Being alone during self-isolation can be challenging to deal with for anyone. However, there are important lessons we can learn. For example, during these trying times, even though we may be isolated, we’re all isolated together.

And when times get tough, it’s important to always find the positives in life.

So if you’ve found yourself confined to your home in the past couple of months, it’s crucial to find beneficial ways to spend your time. Instead of staring at a TV screen or wasting your time on social media.

And with that said, these 5 books by the millennium’s brightest up-and-coming authors are sure to keep you entertained during all the extra time you might be finding yourself with lately.

Tips To Super-Charge Your Morning Routine

Want to kick start your school days? Looking for the best ways to super-charge your morning routine?

Whether you’re a freshman or a senior, I’m sure you know how hard sticking to your school schedule can be. 

On top of attending your classes, you need to find the time to study, take care of yourself, spend time with the people you love. And possibly even try to hold down a full or part-time job.

So no matter how you look at it, school schedules can be hectic. And difficult for almost anyone to handle.

So how can you help yourself stick to your schedule during these ever-so-important years of your life? 

Image result for sunrise - Super-Charge Your Morning Routine

The answer is to super-charge your morning routine. And to get your day started off on the right foot.

Let’s take a look at a few simple tactics you can start using today, which will help you super-charge your morning routine.

 

Get A Full 8 Hours Sleep

No matter how old you get, going to bed early is never any fun.

But while you’re studying in college or university, getting enough sleep is crucial to getting and maintaining successful grades. 

Not only will you feel better and more rested throughout the day, but there’s plenty of evidence to suggest that your brain functions better when properly rested.

In fact, according to Healthline, a recent study showed that medical interns working extended hours made 36% more critical medical mistakes. This is compared to those working a schedule allowing for more sleep time. 

Proper sleep has proven to improve an individual’s problem-solving skills and enhance their memory.

Browse affordable textbooks at Textbook Nova.

Image result for good sleep - Super-Charge Your Morning Routine

Wake Up Early

I know, I know… Waking up early can be hard, especially if you have a busy life, and often feel burnt out from your days. I 100% get the feeling of not wanting to get out of bed.

But, just like getting enough sleep, waking up early is an essential part of a successful, super-charged morning routine. 

Plus, most people never have enough time to get their chores done in the evenings. Especially if you’re trying to go to bed early and get in a full 8 hours of sleep. 

Fortunately, by waking up early, you’ll be able to gain a couple of extra hours, which you can use to get those remaining chores done from yesterday. 

Image result for waking up

Of course, if you’re not used to waking up early, it might take a bit of adjusting. 

But once your body has time to adjust to your new super-charged routine, you’ll be waking up early, feeling more refreshed. And you might not even need an alarm clock anymore. 

In other words, you’ll be eager to get your day started, every day!

 

Eat A Healthy Breakfast To Super-Charge Your Morning Routine

Just like getting enough rest, your brain isn’t going to be able to function its best if you’re not feeding it properly.

Imagine your brain as a gas-powered vehicle, just for a second:

Even on an empty tank, you still might be able to turn the engine over and run for a while. But even then, it’s going to choke and sputter, and simply, won’t run properly. 

The same thing goes for your brain.

If you’re not feeding it healthy, nutritious foods, you might still be able to function, but you’re not going to function at your full capacity. 

Image result for healthy breakfast

Fruits and whole grains are your best friends when super-charging your mornings. Yogurt and oatmeal also make excellent additions to your morning meals.

In fact, oats are digested very slowly by the body.

This means eating oatmeal is a great way to help you increase your energy throughout the course of the day. Rather than only getting only a short spurt of energy after eating.

 

Get Active!

Another awesome way to super-charge your morning routines is by putting in 20 or 30 minutes of brisk physical activity.

You might think that doing this will cause you to be more tired throughout the day. But studies have shown that by being physically active, your body will rest better and heal itself properly.

You’ll end up with more energy and stamina throughout the course of the day.

Image result for morning jogging

In addition to helping you establish a routine and giving you more energy, exercising in the morning will improve your overall mood. Lower your blood pressure, and it’ll also help reduce stress in your daily life.

 

Super-Charging Your Morning Routine In College

Just like a healthy, nutritious breakfast, your mornings are an important part of your day, setting the tone for the rest of the hours to come. 

So if you’re always waking up late, and running around like a hot mess, trying to catch the bus, hoping to make it to class on time, it might just be time to rethink your routine. 

Having a hectic, unplanned day is one of the first ingredients to failure, in school and in life in general. 

Fortunately, by following these tips and learning to super-charge your mornings, you’ll be able to get your days started on the right foot, every day!

Best Reads for Young Adults – Spring 2020

Looking for some of the best reads for this year? Then, look no further because we’ve got you covered! Learn about some of the best reads for young adults for this spring 2020.

We know that you might be busy with your classes and studying for your exams, but there’ nothing that beats sitting down with a good book to help you escape from reality for an hour or two.

In the following blog post, we’ll go over 6 awesome books that are must-reads for young adults this year.

person reading book sitting with cross legs Best Reads for Young Adults

Girl, Stop Apologizing – Rachel Hollis

There’s a reason we put this one at the top of the list. Girl, Stop Apologizing by Rachel Hollis is a book that every young woman (and man) should read in 2020.

One thing that’s great about this book is that Rachel doesn’t hold back or sugarcoat anything that she’s talking about.

Rachel is famous for telling things exactly how they are. But at the same time, she also provides invaluable insight to help you set yourself up for success.

So if you’re broadening the scope of your dreams and looking for insight on exactly how to achieve your goals, definitely give this book a read!

Image result for girl stop apologizing

One Of Us Is Next – Karen M. Mcmanus 

It’s a year after Simon died, and the void of gossip has been left open. Now, the situation becomes a life-altering game of truth or dare. And in turn, things quickly turn deadly for Phoebe, Knox, and Maeve, three of the book’s main characters.

So if you’re a fan of suspenseful thrillers, make sure to add this gossip-infused page-turner to your list of books to read in the coming months. One Of Us Is Next by Karen M. McManus will keep you on the edge of your seat and is sure not to disappoint.

Woven In Moonlight – Isabel Ibanez 

In this fantasy novel, Isabel Ibanez takes you into a fictional world known as Inkasisa, which closely resembles the country of Bolivia, its culture, and its Bolivian politics.

Woven In Moonlight embodies an abundance of immersive prose, rich characters, and a wholly unique tale of revenge, following Ximena, the story’s main character.

Ximena has been seeking revenge against Atoc, who took over the land she was sworn to protect by using an ancient relic. And when she is presented with an opportunity to get her revenge, she takes her chance.

But when a fellow vigilante challenges the heroine to overthrow Atoc without declaring war, the storyline starts to get a bit more interesting. And in turn, Ximena is forced to go to war against what she swore to protect.

This gripping novel from an up-and-coming author is definitely one to immerse yourself into. 

We Used To Be Friends – Amy Spalding 

In We Used To Be Friends by Amy Spalding, you’ll be taken into an incredible, yet heartbreaking journey told through two separate timelines.

The first storyline follows James, preparing for her future studies in college while, reflecting on how her friendship with Kat came to a screeching halt.

And the other, follows Kat, during her first year of college, as she befriends a girl named James.

This interestingly twisty narrative makes for an excellent, gripping read, and is sure to keep you turning the pages right until the end.

Image result for We Used to be Friends By Amy Spalding Best Reads for Young Adults

Not So Pure And Simple – Lamar Giles 

In an attempt to get closer to his childhood crush, Kiera, Del embarks on joining a purity ring club. But what he ends up getting from the club is something that he least expected; learning about what it means to be a man.

Not So Pure And Simple is a story of self-realization. You’ll be empowered as you follow Del through the highs and lows of chasing love and becoming a better man.

It is a story of masculinity in today’s modern society, which is something that anyone can benefit from learning about.

Yes No Maybe So – Becky Arbertalli And Aisha Saeed

Maya and Jamie meet while they are out canvassing the area during an upcoming election. As the polls get increasingly closer, so do the two of them.

But if local activism is something they have both mastered, their romance should be a sure-thing, shouldn’t it?

Written by two incredible young authors, Arbertalli and Saeed created this timely story of modern life and politics. The story even has that added touch of romance that anyone can related to. 

So if you’re interested in political activism or falling in love, make sure to add Yes No Maybe So to the top of your list.

Image result for Yes No Maybe So By Becky Arbertalli

Best Reads For Young Adults

Attending your classes and studying are both extremely important. But it’s equally important to schedule a bit of time for yourself every once in a while.

So what better way is there to relax other than immersing yourself in a good book to help you escape from the stresses of life?

Check out these best reads for young adults from these up-and-coming authors, and you’re sure to be intrigued, entertained, and thrilled until you turn over the very last page.

How to Earn Extra Cash in College

Are you looking to learn how you can earn extra cash while you’re in school? Then you’ve come to the right place! We understand that college can be an expensive time in anyone’s life. Not only are you paying for tuition fees and books. But you’ll also have to worry about housing costs, utilities. And on top of it all, making sure that you still have enough money left over for groceries. And with that said, one thing is for certain, we could always use a bit of extra cash to keep us going. But unfortunately, while you’re in school, often, a full-time job is simply going to be out of the question, especially with how heavy today’s course loads can be. But don’t worry, there are many opportunities out there to help you earn a bit of extra cash while you’re studying. So now you’re probably wondering what are the best ways to earn a bit of extra cash while you’re in college. In the following article, we’ll be taking a look at how you can start earning a bit of extra income while in school. Find affordable college textbooks here.

Start Tutoring or Teaching Lessons

Are you particularly adept at one of the subjects that you’re studying in school? Then, you might want to consider tutoring other students for a bit of extra coin. In almost every one of your classes, there will likely be at least a few students having trouble grasping the topic matter at hand. So don’t just sit idly by while your classmates are struggling. Instead, think about helping them improve their grades, while also helping yourself earn a bit of extra money. If you have any specific skills or talents that other people might want to learn, another money-earning idea is to offer lessons. For example, if you play an instrument, you could always try posting an ad on social media to see if anybody is interested. Or, you could even try putting flyers up around your school to find people to teach.

Apply for Positions At Your School

There are likely many opportunities offered by your college, which could help supply you with a bit of extra spending money. Try visiting your school’s student center to see if they have any positions you might be interested in applying for. The most important perk of looking for earning opportunities at your school is that they’re guaranteed to understand your situation. And shouldn’t have an issue with working around your class schedule.
  And even if you don’t find any earning opportunities at your school, visiting the student center is a great way to get to know what’s going on around your school. Plus, you might even meet a few new people and make some friends while you’re at it!

Meal Delivery

Today, there are many meal delivery services, such as Uber Eats, which allow you to work an extremely flexible schedule and earn a few extra bucks. Companies like this typically allow anybody to be a driver, as long as you have a license, a vehicle, and are insured. And then, all you’ll have to do is pick up and deliver food from local restaurants, earning a bit of extra cash every time you make a successful delivery. The best part of earning money by delivering for a meal delivery company is that you’re almost guaranteed to have some down-time between rushes. This gives you the perfect opportunity to catch up on some study time while waiting for your next delivery.

Become An Uber Driver

If you own a vehicle, another easy way to earn a bit of extra cash is to work as an Uber driver. This works much the same way as delivering meals for Uber Eats. But you won’t be delivering meals. Instead, you’ll be picking up and driving people to their destinations. The fact is that your vehicle can often take up a large portion of your monthly expenses. So why not make better use of it and earn a bit of extra money, instead of having it sit in the driveway unused?

Earning Extra Cash in College

Of course, these are only a few of the options available for earning a bit of extra cash while in school. And there are, fortunately, plenty of other ways to earn a bit of extra cash while you’re in college. Aside from that, if your schedule allows it, you could think about getting a part-time job. We know that a part-time job might not always work with your schedule. But there are many employers that will understand your student situation. And they’ll do their best to accommodate your schedule. But in the end, it’s important to remember that you need to focus on your schooling above all else. You’ll have plenty of time to work and earn money after graduation. But for now, focus on what’s important, and stick to these tips on how to earn extra cash while you’re in school.

The Importance Of Self-Care For Students

Have you been experiencing any of the symptoms of student burn-out? Below, we discuss burn-out and the importance of self-care during college or university.

Whether you’re a freshman, a sophomore, or a senior, post-secondary education can be a stressful time in your life. Chances are, you’ll be juggling your school life, friends, a part or full-time job, and maybe even a family.

No matter how you look at it, these things can lead to a lot of stress in your life.

And if you don’t care proper care of yourself, it’s easy to find yourself feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, and overtired. All of which can lead to burn-out, if not properly addressed. 

create a life you love box

Below, we dive into the best ways to care for yourself during college or university. But first, let’s take a better look at burn-out and what causes it.

What Causes Burn Out?

According to HelpGuide.org, burn-out is a state of emotional, physical, and/or mental exhaustion.

Typically, burn-out is caused by prolonged or excessive stress. This is often linked to feeling overwhelmed and unable to function in daily life.

The cause of stress can vary wildly. However, it’s not uncommon for college or university students to experience stress over their school work.

Burn-out tends to reduce a person’s productivity and drains their energy, leaving them feeling helpless and unable to cope. So when a student experiences burn-out, the effects can be detrimental to their grades.

But, this isn’t where the effects of burn-out end.

In fact, if not addressed, the negative effects of burn-out will eventually begin to affect other parts of your life. This is why it’s important to understand burn-out. And know how to prevent it while studying in college or university.

So how can you prevent and/or treat student burn-out? The answer is self-care. With that said, let’s dive into a few of the best self-care tips for students.

Relax And Unwind

Student life can be stressful for anyone. This is exactly why it’s so important that you dedicate some of your time to resting and relaxing. And although it may seem counterintuitive, forgetting about your school life from time to time is important.

Whether you’re in the middle of working on a major research paper or you’re cramming for your finals, a little bit of R&R might just be what you need to help you make it through. 

Think about it, have you ever found yourself trying to study, but it felt like your brain just wasn’t cooperating with you? 

In times like these, rather than trying to force yourself to focus and getting frustrated with yourself, the best solution is to step back, walk away, and come back to it when you’re rested.

Maybe you need sleep, or maybe you just need to get up, walk around and get your blood flowing a bit. 

Either way, it’s important that you learn to notice when you’re tired and give yourself that much-needed break, which is vital if you get through school without experiencing burn-out.

woman reading a book while sitting on black leather 3-seat couch

Find affordable books to help you relax and unwind here.

Stay Active And Exercise

I know… Not everyone is going to love the idea of going to the gym… But the good news us that you don’t have to go to the gym to stay active and get a bit of exercise each day.

Whether you hit the gym or not, the important thing is that you’re staying active and getting some exercise, every single day of the week.

In fact, experts recommend being physically active for at least 20 to 30 mins per day, which is especially important if you’re sitting in class a lot or have a job that requires you to be seated all day long.

Not only does proper physical activity ensure that you’ll be in the best shape you can be, but there’s also plenty of research to suggest that there are many mental and psychological benefits to staying active as well.

people exercising Self-Care

Get Out And Have Some Fun!

Above all else, it’s important to remember to have fun during your post-secondary years. 

If your only focus is on your studies, it’s easy to lose track of other important things in life, like your family and friends, and even your own mental health.

Therefore, not only is getting out and having fun vital to enjoying your time in school, but it’s also an important part of caring for yourself during the school year.

Of course, that doesn’t mean you should forget about your studies and prioritize having fun over your school. But still, it’s important to understand that having fun and de-stressing is just as important as sitting down and hitting the books before a test. 

man sitting on gray dock Self-Care

Taking Care Of Yourself During College Or University

Studying in college or university can be one of the biggest, most formative parts of a person’s life. That’s why it’s important to make the most of your time in school by taking proper care of yourself.

Without proper self-care during school, it’s easy to experience stress and a sense of being overwhelmed, which can lead to student burn-out if not addressed in time.

That’s why self-care is so important. So remember: relax and unwind, stay active, and have some fun while you’re at it.

How To Survive First-Year Of College Or University

Feeling nervous about going off to college or university? Looking for a few tips on how to survive first-year? Learn about the biggest Do’s and Don’ts of post-secondary survival in today’s blog post.

There’s no doubt about it, starting college or university as a first-year student can be a daunting experience. 

After all, it’s an entirely different world than what you’ve ever known, filled with all sorts of new experiences and opportunities. And as exciting as that may seem, it can be a little discomforting at first. 

But the truth is that starting your first year of school doesn’t have to be an uncomfortable experience. And I swear to you that freshman year isn’t nearly as scary as you might think it’s going to be.

It’s just going to take a bit of getting used to. That’s all. 

So with that in mind, we’ve put together the following guide on surviving your first year of college or university. In today’s post, we’re going to take a look at both the biggest Do’s and Don’ts of how to survive first-year. 

Survive First-Year

The Do’s 

Do Attend Class

With the inherent shellshock of starting your first year of college or university, it’s not uncommon for students to feel overwhelmed while trying to balance their new school schedule with their existing lives. 

And when this happens, it’s easy to try and make up for some time by skipping out on a few classes here and there. But it’s important to know that attending your classes is essential to graduating your course. 

Not only do some courses actually count your attendance and participation as part of your grade, but by skipping classes, you’ll also miss out on an abundance of important information that you need to graduate, which is after all why you signed up for school in the first place. 

Do Explore 

It doesn’t matter whether you’re attending school from home or studying in a new city, it’s easy to feel like you’re in a completely new place during your first year of post-secondary. 

That’s why it’s important to take some extra time to get out and explore your school’s campus to find out what it really has to offer. 

And although it’s important for you to explore just to get your bearings straight, you’ll also have the opportunity to meet other students, just like you. Which brings me to my next point… 

man standing on rooms pathway

Do Know You’re Not Alone

During freshman year, especially if you’re studying in a new city, it’s easy to feel as if you’re the only person in the world who feels the way you do. But for first-year students, this isn’t true in any way, shape or form. 

In fact, there are probably more first-year students at your school than there are sophomores, and seniors combined. 

So make sure you’re not sitting around letting yourself believe that you’re all alone, or that you’ll never meet any new people.

Put yourself out there and start socializing. While you’re out exploring, visit your school’s student center, just to say hello and see what’s happening around campus.

Your school’s library or cafeteria are also great places to meet other students. 

Regardless, go where other students go, and you’re sure to end up meeting a friend or two! In reality, meeting new people and learning to socialize is also an important part of how to survive first-year.

The Don’ts

Don’t Overuse Social Media

Today, we’ve become so connected via the internet that it’s often easy to lose focus of our priorities. 

I mean, how many times have you caught yourself staying up later than you wanted to just because you got distracted browsing through Facebook or Instagram? Or, how often have you made plans to study, and then found yourself taking selfies and watching your friend’s Snapchat stories all day?

Survive First-Year

I’m not saying that you need to give up social media completely. But you need to make sure that it’s not consuming too much of your time or affecting any of your schoolwork. 

Your post-secondary education is one of the biggest and most important parts of your life’s journey. So don’t ruin it because you were too busy trying to snap that perfect selfie. 

Don’t Neglect Study Time

Post-secondary life can be hectic. Whether you’re juggling a job, a family, extracurricular activities, or just have a busy social life with your friends, it’s easy to feel like you just don’t have enough time to sit down and study. 

But no matter what type of life you’re living, it’s important to create a study schedule and stick to it.

This means blocking out a few study sessions and spacing them out throughout the week, which makes it easy to balance studying with the rest of your personal life. 

Find affordable textbooks here.

Don’t Have Any Fun

I’m just kidding… 

In fact, the best advice for surviving your first is to relax, have fun, and to enjoy the opportunity that you have. After all, you only get to live through freshman year once.

But while it is important to enjoy your first year, it’s still crucial that you keep your education as your main focus throughout the year. 

So go out and socialize with your friends, dance your heart, sing karaoke… But just make sure that your fun time isn’t having a negative effect on your studies. 

group of people in front of stage

How To Survive First-Year

It doesn’t matter who you are, your first year of college or university is going to be a bit nervewracking. 

But that doesn’t mean it needs to be a struggle. 

And by focusing on what’s the most important throughout the year, your first year of college can be one of the best, most formative years of your life. 

So make sure to prioritize school, relax, have fun, and make freshman year one of the most unforgettable years of your life. 

Study Tips For College Students

Looking for study tips to help you buckle down for an upcoming exam? Read about the best study tips to help you improve your focus and concentration while hitting the books.

Everybody always tells you how great of a decision it is to go to college. But nobody ever really talks about the grueling hours you’ll need to spend cracking down and studying. 

Especially if you’re trying to balance school with a full-time job or any type of family responsibilities, it can often feel like you’ll never find the time to be able to sit down and study. 

That’s why it’s important to make the most of your time while you’re in school. And I’m not going to sugar coat it, it’s going to take a lot of self-discipline, focus, and concentration. 

But that doesn’t mean that studying needs to be a nightmare. 

Maybe you’ve already found your own study routine, but if you’re looking for some new ways to ramp up your studies, check out the following list of easy and actionable study tips for college students. 

Unplug and Focus Your Mind – Study Tips

The very best study tip we can give you is to unplug yourself from the digital world. 

This means turning off your email notifications, logging out of social media, powering down your smartphone, tablet, or laptop, and focusing your mind on hitting the books. 

If you find yourself struggling to stay away from your electronics, you might even try storing them in another room while you’re studying. Or better yet, leave them at home and take your books over to your local library or cafe to study in a nice, quiet environment. 

By removing yourself from the easy temptation to check your electronics, you’ll be able to enhance your ability to focus and work more efficiently at learning and retaining information. 

Study Tips

Find Your Auditory Space

Everybody is different, but we all have our own preferences when it comes down to an optimal environment to study in. 

For example, some students prefer to study while listening to calm, instrumental music. While others prefer to listen to loud, heavy rock and roll music to be able to focus and concentrate. It’s the same as how some people find droning news radio in the background to be perfect background noise for concentration and study, while others need complete silence in order to focus. 

By finding your perfect auditory space, you’ll be able to better avoid your environmental distractions and focus more on your studies. 

Feed Your Brain – Study Tips

Did you know that our brains are our bodies’ most energy-demanding organs? And that during a single day, the brain can use up to nearly half of the body’s total sugar energy?

According to the Harvard Mahoney Neuroscience Institute, brain function is very closely linked to the body’s glucose levels, as well as how efficiently the brain is able to process information. 

So without the right kind of sugars, your brain won’t be able to produce neurotransmitters efficiently, leading to a breakdown in communication between your neurons. In turn, this makes tasks such as focus and concentration much harder to achieve. 

Also, studies have shown that when your blood glucose levels are too low, your brain’s cognitive functioning can be significantly impaired. Just like being drunk or being over-exhausted.

With that said, another extremely important study tip is to stay nourished and properly hydrated. 

And try to avoid sugary snacks and junk foods. These unhealthy snacks do provide bursts of sugar and energy. But their effects are short-lived, and when your body crashes afterward, concentration can be next to impossible. 

Tune Into Your Circadian Rhythm.

Again, we’re all different. So it’s important to tune into your own circadian rhythm and find out when your most focused times of the day are. 

For example, you might be an early-riser who functions best first thing after their morning coffee. 

Or maybe, you’re the type of person who doesn’t feel focused until it’s dark out and everybody has gone to sleep. 

Regardless, it’s important to learn when your brain functions its best, and build your study routine around your unique energy pattern. 

This way, when you do actually sit down to hit the books, no matter what time of day it is, your mind will be at its freshest and most alert. 

Create A Study Schedule

Successful students find it extremely helpful to create a study schedule and to stick with it consistently throughout the year. 

That means creating a daily, weekly, or monthly routine that works with your home and family life. 

Just make sure to block out time for attending your classes, studying for tests and exams, writing papers, and simply reading up on any new course material. 

And don’t forget to block out a bit of time for rest and relaxation as well. You won’t be able to study effectively if your brain and body are already exhausted. 

Study Tips

Keep Your Books With You – Study Tips

Another super simple study tip is to always bring your reading materials or notebooks with you when you head out of the house. 

You never know when you might find yourself with an extra twenty or thirty minutes to kill. 

And by having your books with you, if you do find yourself needing to kill some time, you can make the most of it by whipping out your textbooks and brushing up on your studies. 

Making the most of every chance you get to study is a sure-fire way to ensure you have what it takes to succeed in your course. 

Making The Most Of Your Studies

If you find it hard to find time for your studies, you’re not alone. There are hundreds of thousands of students all across the country that find it hard to find time to sit down and hit the books. 

But that doesn’t mean that studying has to be a nightmare. 

By following these 6 awesome study tips, you’ll be able to better manage your study time and make the most of every chance you do get to hit the books. 

3 Effective Study Methods for Acing Your College Midterms

3 Effective Study Methods for Acing Your College Midterms

College midterms are right around the corner. Cue all the panic.

Whether you’re a freshman or a senior, midterms can bring on intense amounts of pressure. Here are our three favorite pieces of advice for acing your college midterms (without heaps of stress).

Take Study Breaks with This Simple Trick

Are you cramming a ton of material into a weekend study session?

It might sound simple, but make sure to factor in plenty of breaks if you want to retain the material better. Ever heard of the Pomodoro Technique? It’s a time management method that can help you get the most out of your study session.

Here’s how it works. You break your study material down into smaller, more manageable chunks (and it really works). The Pomodoro Technique is easy:

  • You pick a task, like a few chapters you need to read or an outline you plan to write. 
  • Set a timer for 25 minutes. During the next 25 minutes, you have to promise yourself that you won’t do anything BUT that task. 
  • Work on the task without any interruptions until the timer goes off. When the timer goes off, take a quick break. Spend 5 minutes doing anything but work, whether it’s stretching or grabbing some more coffee. 
  • After your 5-minute break, start the timer again for the next task. Rinse and repeat. Once you’ve done this 4 times, take a longer break for 20 or 30 minutes.

It works because our brain needs rest in order to concentrate. It’s also easy to get sidetracked by our phone, Netflix, or stress. Using the Pomodoro method helps eliminate some of those distractions.

You can manually set a timer on your phone. I personally use a free app called BeFocused so I don’t have to mess with a timer, but either way works! BeFocused is an iPhone app, but if you have an Android use you can use something like Pomodoro Timer.

 

3 Effective Study Methods for Acing Your College Midterms

Don’t Forget to Breathe

Is breathing something you consciously think about? It can save you from stress.

We’re slammed during midterm season. When we’re hit with the overwhelm of studying for everything at once and our to-do list is packed with endless tasks, we forget how to take deep breaths.

Not only can meditation help you remember your material better, but you also don’t need to spend a ton of time doing it to reap the benefits. I was terrible at meditating when I first tried it. I use the free version of the app Headspace to help (available via iPhone and Android). All it takes is three minutes and you instantly feel better!

Even if you’re not interested in meditation, focus on deep breathing when insane amounts of stress begin to hit you. Here’s how you do it:

  • Place your hand on your stomach. Take a deep breath in through your nose until you feel your stomach begin to rise. Note: you want the air to enter all the way into your belly instead of just your chest.  
  • Breathe out through your nose. But make sure your exhale is even longer than your inhale (this is essential). If you inhale for 4 seconds, exhale for 5 seconds. 
  • Repeat for 3-5 minutes! Try it out; you’re guaranteed to instantly feel calmer and less stressed.

3 Effective Study Methods for Acing Your College Midterms

 

Start Your Study Plan Now

Don’t wait to get started! Figure out your study plan a couple weeks in advance.

It seems like professors all schedule their midterms at the same time, right? Enter panic mode.

If you want to avoid major anxiety this semester, get your study schedule nailed down now.

Planning out what days you’ll study, creating your own study guides, and organizing the material will help you prioritize every class. This way you’re not devoting all of your time and energy to just one class.

Your personal study guides can be a simple outline of key topics and ideas you plan to study. Getting a game plan together now will help clear your head.

How to Do Well in College: 5 Tips for Student Success

How to Do Well in College: 5 Tips for Student Success

So you want to learn how to do well in college?

Whether you’re new to campus or want to take things to the next level this semester, here are 5 tips for student success.

Let’s jump into it.

1. Get 7 Hours of Sleep

It might seem like stating the obvious, but getting enough sleep each night is the key to student success.

Why? When you get 7-8 hours of sleep each night, you’ll perform better at school. Rest keeps you alert, focused, and motivated. On the other hand, sleep deprivation can lead to increased anxiety and stress.

But who doesn’t want to sleep more, anyway?

Well, college isn’t exactly known for its downtime. Late night sessions at the library and all-nighters during exam time aren’t exactly news here. And to be 100% honest, there likely will be times where you find yourself up WAY later than planned to finish working on a project or writing the rest of that paper.

Hey, nobody’s perfect.

But if we’re being real, those late night study sessions can usually be prevented with better planning. Yes, you’re juggling a lot in school. You’re busy running from class to class and balancing homework with extracurricular activities or jobs—but you probably have a little more time than you realize.

So how can you find enough time to get in those zZz’s and stay on top of your studies? Keep reading to find out.

How to Do Well in College: 5 Tips for Student Success

2. Break Up Your Tasks

This student productivity idea has two steps. First, find pockets of time where you can complete some work.

Then break up your major projects into smaller chunks. Instead of trying to cram in 150 pages into one study session, you could read a couple of chapters while you’re waiting for your next class to start.

You might need to reorder your to-do list.

I’ll bet that if you find yourself with 10 minutes to kill, you probably spend it on social media. However, keep in mind those few minutes will add up big time throughout the day. What are some other ways you can squeeze in a small task during that time?

I know you can find some pockets of time in your day if you try hard enough. Because the truth is, another benefit of breaking down your tasks is the big assignments become less overwhelming. For example, when you’re working on a paper. Have you ever found yourself staring at a blank page, struggling to get started? Writer’s block is pretty common.

What if you could cut the amount of time you spend on writing in half by turning that 15-page term paper into a step-by-step process?

Start with gathering research, put it into a thorough outline, and then turn it into a paper. If you flesh out your outline, the paper will nearly write itself. (Seriously, try it out and let us know how it goes!)

When you start using your time more efficiently, you can improve your performance.

How’s that? Let’s go back to the cram session. If you’re trying to read 150 pages in one session, it’s tough. You’ll probably rush through the material and skim through a lot of it, missing out on a lot of information.

At the time same, when you know you only need to read 1 or 2 chapters you’ll feel less pressure to rush through the material.

 

3. Participate in Class

Believe it or not, your professors want you to learn.

Participating during their lectures will actually help you retain the material better. This is because it forces you to think critically and analyze what your professor is teaching. What’s more, participation makes the class more interesting.

When your professors know you want to learn, they’ll naturally try to help you in any way they can. Class discussions offer you the opportunity to receive feedback from your professors that will help you improve and grow as a student.

Plus, starting conversations leads to a mentor relationship. If something ever DID come up or you made a mistake, your professor will probably be more understanding with a student they know is hard-working.

How to Do Well in College: 5 Tips for Student Success

4. Get Organized

Now, you don’t need a ton of supplies to stay organized. An accordion binder (labeled for each class) and a planner are a great place to begin.

Take these with you to every single class so they’re always handy. Pencil in assignments, exams, and other major due dates into your planner as soon as you find out about them.

Then, take time at the beginning of each week to (roughly) plan things out.

In this case, you’ll be able to see what’s on your agenda ahead of time and go into each week with a game plan.

 

5. Take Notes (Lots of Them)

You already know you’re supposed to take notes–but I want to offer you one particular piece of advice on note-taking.

Physically write them out. In a notebook during class. Even if your professor gives out printed notes or study guide…take your own. According to NPR, handwriting out notes seems to help your brain retain what you’re learning better than note-taking on a laptop or tablet.

Remember how we said participating in class helps make it more interesting? So does taking notes.

In fact, professors seem to LOVE throwing in extra credit on exams that came directly from lectures. It’s their reward for attending class. It never hurts to take advantage of extra points, right?

 

In Conclusion

Overall, college is learning time management skills. Getting enough rest, organizing your deadlines, and following along in class (through participating and note-taking) are all ways to boost your performance in school.

And breaking down huge projects into smaller tasks will make everything more manageable–and less overwhelming.