It feels unreal, but it is time for school again! Even if you are looking forward to classes and dorm life, you may be feeling a bit nervous. Here are some ways to feel more comfortable getting back to the swing of things.
Get Back on Schedule
Adjusting your schedule preemptively is one of the most helpful things you can do to ease into a new routine. Start waking up when you’ll need to for school and go to bed in time to get enough sleep to complete your day. Start eating meals that you can make at school and eat during times that you’ll have breaks between classes. Go through the motions of your school schedule at home and it will be an easier adjustment once you’re on campus.
Create Social Structure
Create or rekindle relationships before school to avoid those awkward “how was your summer?” conversations. If you are returning to campus, start connecting a few weeks beforehand. Make plans to meet up with familiar faces to decrease anxiety around making new friends. If this is your first year or you’re looking to broaden your social circle, scout out new groups or activities you’d like to participate in. Learn all you can beforehand to decrease the worry of the unknown.
Prepare Your Mind
Hopefully, your summer was full of lounging around and doing a whole lot of nothing. While rest is important, you may be worried about the transition from the couch to the classroom. To reassure yourself that you’re prepared, start doing activities that engage your mind like reading. Set concrete goals for the upcoming school year around your academic performance and personal growth. This will help you focus on making progress and decrease general anxiety. When you feel yourself getting overwhelmed, take a break to clear your mind through meditation or deep breathing.
Going off to school brings feelings of independence and self-reliance, but you’re not alone in your journey. Take advantage of school resources like counseling or accommodations. Make sure to identify and utilize the people who can support you at school and back home. If you need a confidential, professional source of support, find a therapist who can help you navigate the intricate challenges of college life. Finding a telehealth provider makes it more likely that you can see your therapist while you’re at school and when you go back home to visit.