As you maneuver through college, you will learn to carry only the essentials from class to class, as your backpack will become heavy due to textbooks and notebooks for class. That being said, it is important to decide what is an essential for you to have with you at all times, making your college experience stress-free and successful. Now that I’m in my senior year, I have found that there are five essentials that I need to have with me at all times to have a successful week.
Having my planner with me is very important to my organization both on campus and off. While many people will frequent Staples, Target, or Barnes and Noble to get a planner, I chose to go the Bullet Journal route, making a layout that is functional for me to see my schedule for the week and to write down my assignments in a practical way. I found that due to my busy schedule, I need to see my schedule physically laid out in block form to be able to see my availability for the whole week at once. On the other side, I use multicolored post-it notes to write a major to-do list and mini to-do lists for every day of the week. This way, when one is completed I can take it off and it no longer takes up space. I plan my planner out a month in advance, writing down all of my classes, work shifts, meetings, and other commitments on post-it notes for future months. When my planner is not in my bag, I am lost as to what I should do in my free time. Typically, I try to finish homework assignments early so that I can enjoy my weekends, however, without my lists I’m a lost girl.
Having such a busy schedule, it is important that I use my free time wisely to get ahead. Keeping headphones in my backpack allows me to have some peace in the busiest of locations.
I’m an avid highlighter(er?). Not only with my school assignments, but also in my recreational reading, I tend to highlight more than necessary. I love collecting quotes from novels and drawing attention to important notes within my assignments. Luckily, as an English major, sometimes this is one and the same. If I forget a highlighter, I’ll literally ask anyone who is willing to give one up so that I can proceed with my day as normal.
No matter if you drive or not, it is essential to keep your wallet on you at all times. Having money on you is never a bad idea because you never know what could possibly happen. This is also important to me because I get worried when I don’t know where my identification and credit card are, regardless if I know where I left them. (Once, I left my wallet at my boyfriend’s house a half an hour away from where I live, and I had to immediately go back to get it. It tripled my time on the road that day).
5. An Extra Pen
Always keep an extra pen in your bag, whether your classes require you to take physical notes or not! You never know when you’ll need one to sign papers or to lend one out and make a new friend.