How to Study

7 Nov

Let me tell you a secret real quick: high school did not teach you how to study. .

Everything prior to your college career has been handed to you on a silver platter, catering to your needs. Welcome to the real world, people! If you think that just reviewing some notes the night before your first college final is going to cut it, think again. I know that studying is different for everyone, but here are a few tips that I’ve picked up that can hopefully help you out.

1) READ THE BOOK – If your professors ask you to buy a book that is basically breaking your bank account, wouldn’t you think that you should probably spend some quality time with it? Yes! In high school, it was very rare that I ever opened a textbook. Now, my books are my life lines. Spend time reading through the chapters that are on your test. I promise that it won’t be a waste of time. Another helpful thing to do is to use sticky notes while your reading to jot down some of the highlights on the page. Don’t wait until the last minute to read your book. Read a little bit every day up until time for your test. You won’t be sorry!

2) NOTECARDS – It feels like I have note cards spewing out of every part of my dorm room and book bag. I love making note cards to help me study. Whether it’s important terms or just an idea that you’d like to remember, note cards are the way to go! They are portable, so you can keep them in your pocket or purse and study when you have a little free time. Also, by taking time to write out your note cards, you’re secretly studying! Imagine that..

3) DO NOT WAIT –  It is not unusual to have only two or three grades for the whole semester. With this being said, you have to understand that college midterms and finals cover a lot of material. You cannot study two nights before your test and expect to be okay. Put time and effort into your study habits in order to get a grade that you can be proud of.

4) STUDY GROUPS – Study groups are one of my favorite things to utilize as a college student. If you know some people in your classes, get together and go to the library or a coffee shop and study collaboratively. It’s great to piggy back off of one another, quiz each other, and gain new ideas or perspectives on certain topics. Group studying can be extremely helpful!

As crunch time in the semester approaches us, I hope that you will incorporate some of these studying habits into your routines. Let me know what studying tools help you out!

Happy Studying!

-xoxo, Emily

How to Include Family

5 Nov

For me, my family is what will always keep me sane amidst all of the crazy that college entails. My family is very important to me, so moving two hours away from them was a hard thing. At times it has been easy for me to feel like I’m missing out on important things that my family is doing at home: (My sister’s softball games, Church functions, Family dinners..etc) Maybe it’s not normal for you, but I tend to call my Mom at least once a day. Usually, I don’t even have anything to talk about – but just hearing about her day and what’s going on at home is so comforting to me.

Today, I wanted to make the point that just because you have gone and moved away for college – doesn’t mean that your family has forgotten about you. It’s your job to not forget about them too! In most cases your family is helping you pay your way through your college years. Keep them involved in what your doing while your away! Don’t forget to pick up the phone every once in awhile. Maybe you have a busy schedule and are involved in a lot of social activities on your campus, but making time to spend the occasional weekend at home means a lot to your loved ones. I’m sure you have plenty of friends that you may have made a “family” out of, but don’t forget the ones at home – because they definitely haven’t forgotten about you.  Determine ways to stay involved in each other’s lives and remember to say and do the little things that remind someone of how much you love them.

Friends will come and go, but family is forever! Take advantage of the time you spend with them, and never forget to say “I love you.”

Happy Monday!

-xoxo, Emily

How to be Confident

28 Oct

Confidence is such an attractive quality – ask anyone! For a while, I used to struggle with confidence, especially in high school. There were areas that I felt like I had confidence in, while others needed serious improving. When I got to college, I told myself that would all change. There was no reason to be afraid! We are all born with confidence inside of us, and I’ve learned that the best way to become that confident person you can be proud of – is to embrace it! Practice does make perfect.

There is never any reason for you to feel unsure or insecure about yourself. Our personal insecurities are often clouded by our own clouded judgments. Do yourself a favor and never let people tell you that you are not capable of something. Something to keep in mind is this; always expect success out of yourself. That way, you will be constantly striving to give your best efforts that in time, will result into something that you can be proud of. We all have strengths and weaknesses, but make sure to trust your own capabilities. If someone criticizes you, take it this as an opportunity to improve. If someone does better than you, see it as an opportunity to learn from them. If you fall short at something, realize you can get closer next time. Be confident in your personal potential. We cannot control the future or be in charge of what happens to us on a daily basis, but this is no reason to have fear. Embrace the unknown, step out of your comfort zone, and jump right in there! I often find myself believing every negative thing that is said about me… and I forget to be equally thankful for compliments and praises from others. It’s okay to receive praise as well as receiving constructive criticism from others. There is absolutely no reason for us to compare ourselves to those around us. Be confident in who YOU are & never let anyone tell you that you can’t or that you’re not worth it.

Here is a quote that I found today, that I thought applied directly to this post and was very worthy of sharing:

Above all, remember you are capable and worthy—just as much as anyone else, regardless of what you’ve achieved, regardless of what mistakes you’ve made. Knowing that intellectually is the first step to believing it in your heart. Believing it is the key to living it. And living it is the key to reaching your potential.” -Lori Deschene

Happy Monday! Keep your head high!

-xoxo, Emily

How to Rant

24 Oct

“Ring by Spring” . . . I know you’re all familiar with this phrase. Especially because I attend a small Christian university, it seems like I cannot escape this evil saying. This phrase has become some what of an unstated “rule” in society. If you’re not engaged by the time that you are graduating, then you might as well just be forever alone. Right? Wrong.

What? Are you kidding me? Who even came up with this silly saying? I will be the first to tell you that I am not going to school to receive my “Mrs Degree”. This subject aggravates me to no end. It’s so strange to me how so many people become so concerned, and even consumed with the idea of finding their soul mates while at college. If that’s what going to college is for, then I guess I should probably drop out.  Too many people are so caught up in getting that engagement ring that they are missing out on what’s right in front of them.

Let me say this: if you are in college, and are in a successful relationship- that’s great! I’m so happy for you. However, to those who are just moping around campus like their lives have no meaning because they don’t have a significant other, … quit. Or to those of you who are constantly on the prowl for that person, … quit.

College is about so much more than finding the person you want to spend your life with! There are so many opportunities, experiences, and memories waiting to be made! Quit wasting your time trying to find that “perfect” person. When the time is right, that person will eventually come into your life! Remember that you are independent and you don’t need a girl/boy at your hip at all times. Do what you want to do, have fun, and quit moping around! You are not expected to succumb to this pressure. Actually, just go ahead and throw this phrase out of your head! Keep in mind, that I am not “anti-relationship”, I’m just stating one of my biggest pet-peeves. Life is too short for us to rush these major marks in our lives. Slow it down, and enjoy the ride.

Rant over.

-xoxo, Emily

How to Deal with Professors

21 Oct

Contrary to what the movies or books may tell you, college professors are not all mean and wanting to see you purposefully fail. Go ahead and get that idea out of your head!

College professors are tough, yes… But college is tough. What did you expect? In most cases, they really are looking out for you and want to see you succeed. No, they’re not going to become your best friends and new texting bud, but it is generally a good idea to have a relationship with your professors. Check their office hours and schedule appointments with them to discuss any questions or concerns you may have about an assignment. Treat this appointment with high importance by showing up on time, dressing nicely, and having prepared what you will discuss. Always remember to address them properly as “Professor” or “Doctor”.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions or email them at any time! They are teachers, so their job is to teach! Remember to be respectful to your professors and keep in mind that they do have lives outside of the classroom.

They’re just people, doing their jobs. They are not out to get you or kill you with all the work they give you. It’s for your own good. Accept it and appreciate it.

That’s all for today!

-xoxo, Emily

How to Get Involved on Campus

20 Oct

What you get out of your college experience will only be as much as you give to it. As a freshman, I was extremely overwhelmed with the idea of joining new organizations or clubs and trying new things. You may feel like you have no idea where to start, because there are SO many opportunities. Getting involved is a great way to make new friends, try new things, and make your mark on campus!

My best advice for you is to go out and get your hands dirty! You’ll never know what things you will like until you go and try them. It’s kind of like your mom telling you to try a new food, even though you think you won’t like it. I can hear my mom now, “You don’t know that you don’t like that broccoli until you try it.” As much as I hate to admit it, she was right. (And I do like broccoli now…)

Your campus is full of organizations and clubs just waiting for you to join! Figure out what you’re passionate about. There are clubs specifically for your major, for social experiences, and for serving. Talk to people who are involved in those activities and ask them for their advice. If you like athletics, try going to new sporting events or even joining an intramural sports team. Go to the cheesy events that the school puts on, just for fun. Chances are, you’ll end up meeting new people that you never expected to. Going to an event you might not normally be interested can actually open the door to other opportunities if you keep your mind open.

Disclaimer: Make sure that you are not doing TOO much – It may be overwhelming or even seem like too much of a chore, rather than something you choose to do for enjoyment. Work around your schedule, and find what is manageable for YOU.

If you see an opportunity that looks like something you’d enjoy, pursue it. Know when to say no, but know when to say yes as well… and welcome anything new and exciting that comes your way! Have fun!

-xoxo, Emily

How to be a Good Roommate

17 Oct

Maybe you’ve grown up with siblings, so you know that sharing is a must. Or maybe, you’ve never had to share a space with anyone. Having a roommate can be a great challenge for those of you that are new to the college life. However, it can also be one of the best parts of your experience! Since you are only in charge of yourself, here are some tips to helping you become the best roommate that you can be.

1) Understand that you do not have to be best friends. Yes, you live together, but it’s also important that you have your own group of friends. If you try doing every activity together, you will get burnt out of that relationship, I promise.

2) Communicate! Just like in any relationship, communication is key. If something is bothering you, don’t be afraid to let them know. Now, remember to do this in a kind and gracious way – because you do have to live with them. If you address your roommate when little things are beginning to frustrate you, then they will be aware of things that maybe they didn’t realize were bothering you in the first place. Addressing the small things is much easier than addressing the bigger ones.

3) Don’t touch their stuff. Oh my goodness, this is one of my biggest pet peeves. If it’s not your stuff, do not touch it. Respect your roommate by asking permission first.

4) Follow the Golden Rule. As simple of a concept as it may be, this will save your relationship. Treat your roommate how you would like to be treated! Act like an adult, respect each other, and help each other out. It will make a huge difference.

Remember to make the best of every situation. This is part of college and of growing up!

-xoxo, Emily

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