7 Ways to Make Being in School Less Painful

September 15, 2015

Student's backpack and school supplies
How do you feel when you start your school day?

School doesn’t have to be stressful.

Between early mornings, challenging courses, homework, and after-school activities, being in school can seem like a lot to handle. But going to school doesn't have to be something you dread. Here are seven things you can do to make this and every school year a more pleasant experience.

1. Regulate your sleep schedule

Staying up late may be fun, but you’ll pay for it in the morning. How many times do you hit the snooze button?

Consistently losing sleep will make you irritable and forgetful. It will also drastically impair your ability to learn, reducing focus, reasoning skills, and problem solving skills. So how much sleep is enough? This article and graphic from the National Sleep Foundation can help you figure out what’s right for you.

2. Eat a solid breakfast

Going to bed on time allows you to wake up in time for breakfast, an essential part of a productive school day. A good breakfast means more stable energy levels throughout the day. No breakfast means a decline in memory function, an integral part of the learning process.

This doesn’t mean you have to get up too much earlier, either. Try these healthy 5-minute-meal ideas:

5 healthy 5-minute breakfast ideas

3. Get organized

Keep materials for each of your classes together and arranged in chronological order, so you don’t waste time searching for papers when you need them. If you’re not good at staying organized, get tips from friends who are. See what works for them and use those ideas to develop your own system.

Staying organized will also help you when it’s time to study. Your notes and assignments will be easy to find, reducing the stress of preparing for that big test.

4. Write it down

Pen and planner
Invest in a daily planner (or use the one provided by your school) and write everything down. Write down your assignments, mark down times for club meetings and other activities, and note your weeknight and weekend plans. This will stop you from overbooking yourself and ending up overwhelmed.

Devise a plan of attack for all of your big projects or papers, breaking them down into more manageable pieces to be done on set dates. Craft a study plan when a big test is approaching; give yourself enough time to review your materials at a reasonable pace.

5. Don’t procrastinate

Waiting until the last minute can mean disaster when things don’t go as planned. The assignment may prove to be more difficult than you anticipated, or computer problems could bring all progress to a screeching halt.

Not to mention the lasting effects this repeated stress can have on your health and well-being, such as fatigue, anxiety, and irritability. Learn to manage your time, prioritize (do the most important and urgent tasks first), and break down major tasks to be sure you can get everything done.

6. Take advantage of the weekend

The weekend is your chance to relax, refuel, and prepare for the coming week. Don’t spend all your time vegging out in front of the TV or scrolling through your Facebook feed. Go outside! Do something you love! Meet up with friends and go on an adventure. Not sure what to do? Take a chance and try something new.

Once you’ve had your fun, get busy preparing for the coming week. Review and update your planner. Set your goals. Take the time now, and you’ll feel a lot better when Monday arrives.

7. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, are having trouble keeping up, or just need a little extra guidance, don’t be afraid to let someone know. You can talk to your parents, teachers, another student you trust — anyone who has your best interests at heart. There are also free online resources available at sites like KhanAcademy.org and Quizlet.com.

Maybe you need support from a tutor to help you get organized, get caught up, and get the grade you want. That one-on-one relationship could give you the confidence boost you need to do your very best this year.

However you decide to tackle this school year, remember one thing: You can do this! Believe in yourself and you can reach your goals.

Share these tips with your friends and if you have any more tips for having the best school year possible, leave them in the comments below.

Thandiwe Ogbonna is a professional tutor with a sincere passion for learning. She loves to help her students reach their full potential in a supportive and encouraging environment. 

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