Starting school in January is much different than starting school in August. You already have months of school behind you in the current school year and are anxious to get back to see your friends. What you aren’t too anxious about is homework piling up and that job to start up again. The weather has changed, the professors are different, and the semester is unpredictable, but here are some things that will make it that much easier to start the semester off right:

1. Start the day strong with setting an alarm. We all know that a bed is much more comfortable than a desk you’ll be sitting in for hours, hearing nonsense about the lecture, but when it’s time to start the day, get up and get ready without hesitation.

2. Pre-order your textbooks. Yes, they are too expensive, and yes, sometimes they aren’t even cracked open, but textbooks are required material for courses so might as well get a head start to beat the crowds while you can.

3. Don’t forget to pack your winter gear! It’s not the sunny and warm syllabus week like you had back in August. These next few months are about to be brutally cold, so make sure you have a hat, scarf, gloves, and whatever else it may be that keeps you nice and toasty.

4. Speaking of clothes, you also cant forget to bring your spring break vacation clothes with you to school. This is something I’m guilty of forgetting myself. Although it might seem far away, spring break is around the corner, and you will want to have some lighter clothes if you’re going on vacation…don’t forget these at home!

5. Stick to a schedule. It’s a fact that being someone who has a stringent schedule is more productive and successful than those who don’t. Take five minutes out of the beginning of each day to write down the things you need to accomplish. It will feel great when you can cross them off as you’re completing each one.

6. Load up on winter food! That means: pasta, bread, baked dishes, basically whatever makes you feel warm. The temperature is cold which means your food needs to be hot! Keeping these cheap and easy meals in the house is perfect for winter survival.

7. Hefty winter foods don’t help much for staying in shape, but as long as you hit the gym a couple of times each week you will be fine! I know its cold, but once you start moving your body, you will be happy you did. This is something that also relieves stress that is brought on early in the semester.

8. Invest in a good pair of headphones for all reasons. Whatever the reason may be, studying or working out, it’s nice to have them handy.

9. Invest in a good pair of snow boots. We haven’t seen much snow yet this year, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t coming. February is known for being the snowiest month of the year. Get those warm and durable boots so getting to class isn’t so dreaded and dangerous on that ice.

10. Buy a space heater; you’ll thank yourself later. Even if it’s not something that’s needed immediately, it’s always nice to have a back up form of warmth in case of emergency.