As a freshman in my second semester of college, I already have a semester of school under my belt and had to learn how to stay focused and minimize stress in order to do well in my classes. It took about a semester to figure out, but here are a few tips/strategies I use to minimize stress this semester and stay focused.
One of the worst, but most common things, is forgetting an assignment or when a test should be. This is actually pretty easy to overcome, just get yourself a planner and write in all of the important due dates and deadlines of the semester.
This is also an easy thing to overcome if you really become aware of what you are doing. What works for me is to complete my assignments the day I get them, so that way I have time for larger or more important projects.
Take a walk
I use this tactic when I have hit a block in my writing. Whether it be an essay or a lab report, if i get stuck and don't know what further to write, taking a walk always helps me clear my head or maybe even generate ideas on what to write next.
Take periodic breaks
Trying to study or do homework for hours on end sounds exhausting, especially without breaks. Try to do an assignment at a time or a few problems or something, basically find what works for you, and throw in some breaks to keep your mind sharp and refreshed.
Make a to-do list
One of the most satisfying things for me is checking things off of a to-do list, it makes me feel like I have accomplished something. This way, you can stay organized, and also provide self-motivation to get things done.
Listen to music
One way for me to stay focused while I am writing or doing some math problems is to listen to music while I am doing it. I tend to stay more focused and get more done, plus I enjoy myself a little more. Find a good study playlist and stick to it.
Call your mom
One of the most comforting things for me when I am stressed is to talk to someone, and I turn to the person that is and will always be there for me, my mom. She can give me the motivation to keep going and make me feel a little less stressed, by reminding me why I am at college and what I hope to do in the future.
It happens to all of us, we get so caught up in what we are doing that we forget to eat. But we need food, our brains need fuel to function and better our studying, so always remember to eat meals or snack on something.
Kind of going along with taking a walk, maybe your school has a nice rec center that you can take advantage of and use to exercise and stay healthy. Exercise not only leads to a healthy body, but also a healthy mind. This can also enhance time management.
Don't be afraid to say no
Have too much homework but your friends want to go out this weekend? Don't be afraid to tell them that you are too busy and focus on yourself, good friends should understand that you have other priorities.
Mindfulness can help you combat feelings of stress or anxiety, leaving you in a relaxed state. I try this occasionally, and helps me de-stress a ton and refocus on what I am doing.