Best New Year’s Resolutions for Students: No need to be stressed or overwhelmed, now is the perfect time to take your dreams into your own hands, and set goals that will help you on your path to a degree. Let these resolutions will help you be ready to take on the year as a student successfully and set you on the right way to furthering your own happiness and fulfillment.
Whether you’re half-way through college or your degree or about to start university or preparing to graduate, the beginning of a new calendar year is an good opportunity to think about what you’d like to do a little differently – and set some intentions in the form of New Year’s resolutions.
Best New Year’s Resolutions for Students
Focus On Acquiring Knowledge, Not Just Grades
A bunch of A’s on a report card won’t matter at all if you don’t know how to demonstrate that you can do the work in the real world. As a student, it can be really easy to worry about getting those A’s. But what should be even more important is what you learn. The knowledge you get from school is what’s going to prepare you to go into a job, qualified for the work ahead.
Spend Less And Save For Tuition
Find ways to save for your tuition as every little bit that you can save helps!
Saving for tuition doesn’t have to be complicated or stressful. Making a budget after you analyze your expenses will help you really keep track of what you spend and what you can save. This year, you may want to set a resolution to find simple ways to help you save for tuition. There are a lot of things where you can plan to cut down on your expenses and save up for your college/university education.
Create Good Balance between Education and Life
Sometimes, going to college feels all-consuming. There’s always another test to study for, another paper to write. Make a resolution this year to truly find balance and schedule to help you fit everything in. You don’t have to be one of those people who decides they can’t get the education they want because they don’t have time. You can chose an online coursework or campus to get to, you can attend school on your schedule. Do your assignments and tests when it works for you. You can fit your social life, family responsibilities, and work schedule all side-by-side with your online learning.
Take Classes That Will Lead to Your Dream Job
Spend time taking aptitude and personality tests to see what areas you’re inclined to as some college students feel that they waste time and money in classes they don’t care about. It’s important that you really focus in and determine what your dream job is, so you can take courses that will help you get there. Ask a professional in a field you’re interested in questions about their job, and even go job shadow them if you’re able.
Get Help from Experts
No student is alone, always seek help from an expert, program mentor or counselor when needed. It can be frustrating to go through your classes and feel like you’re barely keeping your head above water. From the time you enroll as a student, and within each class you take, there are lots of people with skills in your chosen field that will can help you and mentor you, from teachers to counselors.
Learn Something New
Learning outside of course materials is crucial to help broaden your knowledge base and impress future employers. Start following influencers on social media like PODCAST in your areas of specialization. Many podcasts cover broad topics of physical well-being and mental health. Also, documentaries can be a great way to unwind from the stress of your workload. You can find a huge variety to choose from on Netflix, whether you are interested in history, art, sociology, fashion, or politics. You can also try picking up an autobiography written by one of your favorite public figures.
Apply For Financial Aid or Scholarships
One of the main sources of stress for college students, and their families alike, is the ongoing management of student debt. Plenty of nonprofits, private companies, schools, individuals, and professional and social organizations offer scholarships to college students. Even the US Department of Education has made the process of financial aid accessible to students across the country. If you are feeling stressed about your financial situation as a student and the burden it presents for the future, send a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or research local sponsorships in your city.
Participate More during Class
Although it may be tempting to rely solely on class reading materials, professors often rely on scheduled classes to share useful information about upcoming exams or assignments. Many times, professors will include information on the exam which was discussed during the class but not explicitly mentioned in the assigned reading. For this reason, it is important that you attend your classes regularly, not to mention the financial loss many students see from skipping their classes!
Especially if you are enrolled in an online program, remember that it is never too early to start reading and taking notes to prepare you for the next class. Spending some extra time researching questions from the reading will improve your engagement during class, making it much easier to participate in the discussion and get the most out of your tuition!
Get More Involved Outside Of Lectures
College is often the first time students leave their families. Campus activities can help create a community away from home. Greek life, local grassroots organizations, and professional societies can change your entire college experience! And, if you are still not convinced, all these activities will look amazing on your resume after you graduate.
Find local organizations who need volunteers or interns to develop your professional skills. For more technical degrees (engineering, computer science), try out a side project like creating an app or helping students with their own projects.
Books are an excellent way to gain a lot of knowledge on a huge variety of topics, and they are also great exercise for your brain. It’s not that difficult to go through 20 or more books in a year; you only need to make it a habit, discover your favorite type of book, and find a bit of time for reading here and there.
Start a Part-Time Job
Another way to improve your resume is with a part-time job during your studies. Though it can be tough to balance, students who work at least a few hours a week show strong initiative and work ethic, and the ability to learn new skills, maybe even increasing their earning potential for the future. Not to mention the extra spending money you can have in your pocket! Students often find work both on and off campus and in many forms. You can start by contacting the financial aid office on campus and asking about work-study opportunities. If you prefer to work off campus and get a break from the academic environment, take a walk through town and fill out applications for student positions.
If you are studying online, pay extra attention to your time management. Once you find your part-time job, you might want to finish your school work in the mornings when you feel the most energy and focus, getting it out of the way early on. Many large businesses like Bank of America, Walmart, and AT&T are willing to help students with their education costs. There also plenty of freelance opportunities out there that will give you the freedom to manage your own schedule throughout the week.
Set Daily Personal Goals
Many New Year’s resolutions involve daily goals of exercise and meditation in an effort to improve overall well-being and mental health. While these are always beneficial areas of focus, try setting more specific goals relating to the people and habits in your own life. For example, if you are working on a project with a very difficult classmate, make a personal resolution to change your own behavior. Once you realize the source of stress in the situation — maybe this person is too controlling, too lazy, or too loud — then you can begin to resolve your own behavior.
Create a Plan for Your Future
No matter where you are in your academic experience, plan goals you can realistically achieve in the next week, month, and overall goals you can reach before you graduate. What do you want to achieve both professionally and personally? Map out a plan to get there, breaking it up into short, medium and long term benchmarks.
Financial planning is crucial as well. Use apps like Quicken and Mint to create a budget for yourself. Once you see where your money actually goes, set a realistic budget for yourself each month and try to cut back where possible. It is never too early in life to start avoiding debt and monitoring your credit score. After you graduate, you might want to rent an apartment right away or request a loan. Your credit score will play a huge part here, so keep a close eye if you use a credit card while in school.
Health-related resolutions should be on every students lists. Let us assume that as a student, you’re already reading a lot of books but if your health is not intact it will definitely affect you in every aspect of your life including your studies. So make it a priority that you keep your health in check by either joining the campus gym or a university sports club, getting more sleep, cutting down on fast food, quitting smoking or taking it a little easier on the Happy Hour offers at the student union bar.
For students in particular, the resolution to stop procrastinating is another of the most common – either in general or in relation to a specific type of task – and not just at New Year’s. Just ‘stop procrastinating’ alone is too vague; if you want to succeed at this, you’ll need to identify some specific actions (as for all resolutions). Depending on your procrastination habits, this could mean a self-imposed Facebook or YouTube ban (at least during certain hours), finding a less distracting place to study, or even just making sure you don’t have more than two tabs open on your internet browser at any time!
Be More Organized
Another common group of New Year’s resolutions for students relate to organization. Specific examples that came up in my quick survey include: doing the set reading before (not after) the seminar, writing up clear notes after each lecture, organizing and labelling class notes, and creating and sticking to a revision schedule before exams. Looking back at my own student years, being more organized could have meant getting hold of the books I needed well in advance, instead of leaving it to the last minute and finding all the copies had been taken out of the library and no local bookshops had them in stock.
Join More University Clubs
Of course university is not only about coursework; it’s also a chance to meet new people and get involved in all kinds of activities and clubs. Again, looking back at my own time at university, I was always resolving to take advantage of more of these opportunities – and this was one resolution I did succeed at, to an extent! As with all New Year’s resolutions, the key to success is not to be too over-ambitious, and to set just a few clear and achievable goals. So if you’re going down this route, maybe just choose one new club or activity to try out each semester.
Cut Down On Extra-Curricular Activities
As humans (not only students) it is important to try to strike a balance in all that you do even if it means cutting down on some activities that you are involved with because some extra-curricular activities can put a damp on students overall performance in school.
Watch Less TV
The average American spends nearly 8 hours a day watching TV, more time than they spend cooking and probably sleeping! That is time that could have been better spent developing skills, learning, or keeping your body active. Once you manage to cut down on TV time, you will realize just how long and productive a day can really be.