Breaks are awesome. I don’t take having time to relax, travel, and spend time with family and friends lightly. Especially as I’ve gotten older, it becomes harder to do any of those three things. Again: Breaks are awesome.
One other reason why I love breaks—and the reason for this post—is the time it provides to prepare and plan for an upcoming semester. This is no small task. Therefore, I thought I’d focus on what I actually do before each semester. These are not resolutions, they’re actionable steps toward planning for a successful semester. And so far, they’ve worked pretty well.
Work on the Calendar
One of the first things I do to prepare for the semester is build my google calendar. All I do is put in all of my classes and big events that are already planned. This takes about 30 minutes, and simply having a basic schedule (with notifications!) saves me a lot of stress throughout the semester. One less thing to worry about.
I picked this one up from Warren Buffett. Each semester I create a list of 15 to 25 goals I want to achieve over the coming months. Then, I narrow the list down to my top 5 goals, cross the rest off, and leave my 5 goals in a note on my phone. This forces me to think on what’s ahead, prioritize, and simplify what I want to accomplish. This has allowed me to make academic and professional decisions more easily through knowing what my overarching objectives are for a given semester.
Organize for Classes
I get all of my folders and notebooks ready to go and labeled at the start of each semester. Easy enough, but this can be a nuisance if it’s not taken care of before I arrive to campus or during syllabus week.
Clean clothes are happy clothes. Take advantage of the nice laundry machine at home that doesn’t need quarters or require a long wait to use.
Hope this helps! Talk soon.