As the spring semester and starting my very first internship approaches (this is my last free week before my internship starts next week!), my anxiety is starting to slowly creep up on me more and more each day.
I know many other students feel the same way when it’s time to start another semester, new job, etc. Sometimes professors will post the syllabus before we actually meet on the first class, giving students the low-down on what the class is going to be like and what assignments there will be. When I read these, I tend to begin worrying about group projects and who would be in my group, what I’d do if I didn’t know anyone in the class, where I would even sit in the classroom, the tiniest things!
Going into my last semester of college, I’m not too anxious about my classes this semester. Instead, all of my worrying has been about my internship that begins next week. What am I going to do with a full hour lunch break? What if the employees hate me? What kind of projects are they going to have me working on? What if I even end up not liking it? Am I going to be too overdressed or underdressed? While I’m (REALLY) excited to start my internship and get a foot in the door in my career world, I’m just as nervous and scared!
The days leading up to a new semester, job or internship tend to be really stressful, anxiety-filled and overall just not enjoyable for me. However, I wanted to write about the ways I’ve started to cope with these feelings as I know beginning new and scary things is just a part of life now!
Plan Out Your Days Ahead of Time
This is probably the biggest help for me when it comes to easing anxiety about starting a new semester or job. If I don’t have something planned out for the few days leading up to the first day, chances are I’ll just stay in bed all day, anxious and depressed. Which obviously doesn’t help anything or anyone, but I’ll be so worried that I won’t care about doing anything else!
What I’ve learned to do to combat these feelings is writing down in my planner little things do each day before starting whatever it is. Making simple plans like walking the dogs, going on a hike or even just running to Target will make me get out of bed, get ready for the day, and force me not to just lay in bed making up crazy, false scenarios that could happen in class or at work.
For me, I’ve learned I need to have plans for at least the three days leading up to new classes or a job. Giving yourself things to do will force yourself not to think about whatever it is you’re worrying about! Even forcing yourself to do things you may hate like cleaning your bathroom, vacuuming everywhere or even going through all your clothes to donate unwanted things is a great thing to do to keep your mind off things! I’ve found that it’s best to force myself to do things that would take a while to do, like cleaning the bathroom because it not only occupies my mind for a good amount of time, it’s also satisfying once it’s done!
I’m that kind of person who lays out the clothes they’re going to be wearing the next day the night before, with their bookbag packed and ready to go. (I’m a bit much, I admit, oh well) I didn’t used to always be like this though; I used to love putting things off until the last minute. However, that only caused me to become flustered, even more anxious and unorganized.
While I don’t recommend people buying textbooks before the first day of class, I think it’s vital to at least look up the textbooks used for your classes ahead of time, write them down, and shop around for the best price online, bookmarking the best ones. I’ve actually been that person to show up with the textbook on the first day of class and the professor said they had forgotten to update their syllabus and was going to use a newer edition of the book I had gotten – not letting me use the one I came to class with. Some professors expect people to come in first day of class with textbooks in hand, but most do not.
Having the books you’ll (likely) need already bookmarked after your first class’ meeting will make it that much easier, quicker and less stressful when it comes to ordering your books.
When it comes to starting a new job, I always do research on the company from sites like Glassdoor or search the company on YouTube, looking for any employees who have uploaded videos about their own experiences with the company. Sometimes this may only be helpful if you’re going to be working for a major company or corporation, but it’s always a good idea to do research ahead of time!
Ensuring you have the right attire for your job is also vital! If you’re not positive about what kind of clothes you’ll be needing if there isn’t a uniform, it’s always good to double check with your employer before your start date. This will give you time to go through your closet, look at what clothes you already have and determine if you need I went in thinking this public relations firm would be very formal and business like, but everyone was in business casual and was really laid back!
While starting a new semester or job can be really nerve-racking and stressful, but it doesn’t always have to be! Take time to yourself to reflect on what would make you feel the most prepared and ready for the big day, and do that for the three days leading up to it. Starting off anything on the right foot is vital and will help you more in the long run. I hope you guys enjoyed my tips and let me know if there’s anything you do specifically to help combat the worries of a new semester or job!