Right now is the time of year when I look back and think about all the stupid mistakes I made during first semester. Like not keeping up with the textbook readings in Developmental Biology and falling behind by a whole chapter. And then another. And another. And then one more, to make it a nice even number.
While some people look forward and plan ahead for the next semester, I can’t help but look back. So instead of a “New Year’s Resolution” list of the stuff I plan to do next semester, this is a list of the stuff I plan to never do again.
5) Falling behind on the readings, even by a single page. It’s a slippery slope. One reading quickly becomes two, and then three. You know those harmless domesticated bunny rabbits that a couple of pet owners released into the wild? It’s kind of like that.
4) Underestimating the class with a 100 per cent final is a deadly error. There aren’t any assignments, quizzes or midterms to worry about. But even if I’m completely caught up with my other four courses, procrastination is like an infectious disease: it starts with that one class but spreads quickly, devastating my carefully-planned study schedule for all my other classes and labs.
3) Telling my older sister that she needs to relax and close the textbook every once in a while. And then watching her make the Dean’s list every single semester since she started at Waterloo, from my relaxed-but-non-Dean’s-list chair.
2) Although I still haven’t had the opportunity to test my theory that nobody ever shows up, including the professor, I won’t register for any more early morning classes. The temptation to skip them is much too strong, and oddly enough, professors don’t give any sort of “You actually showed up at 7:00 in the morning” bonus marks.
1) Make a curfew for myself and this time, really stick to it. Operating on less than five hours of sleep actually really is counterproductive. Considering the fact that sleep deprivation is an interrogation strategy, right alongside bright lights and sharp objects, it shouldn’t be part of my study repertoire.
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