The college application period is definitely stressful for every high school student that wants to get into one of his or her university picks. Not only are there application forms to fill out, but there are also a bunch of other requirements to gather and prepare. On top of these, school responsibilities don’t go away — teachers still provide homework and require projects to be completed.
It’s no wonder a lot of students become very crabby and lose weight during this time. With all the demands for their time and attention, and with the desire to secure their future by getting into a really good college, their well-being takes the backseat. They would much rather focus their time and energy on meeting requirements; after all, when the application period is over, things can be expected to go back to normal.
However, a smart student doesn’t let the college application period negatively impact his or her quality of life. A smart student prepares thoroughly so life remains manageable despite the great demands.
If you’re getting ready to send your college application but you want to control the craziness of application period, here’s a checklist that will allow you to manage your time and energy wisely.
· Create a filing system (especially if you’re applying to several universities and using snail mail to submit your application forms).
This will keep your documents organized. At the same time, it will help you stay on top of submission dates, according to top college consulting services, Capital College Consulting. It’s worth mentioning as well that a filing system will make submitting requirements a whole lot easier because all your documents are properly compartmentalized.
· List all the important instructions for your application documents.
When you use a filing system, make sure to include the universities’ specific instructions for submission. Write down all the instructions so you can make sure that when you’re ready to submit the documents, you are able to follow everything and can easily check and re-check how you took care of all the instructions.
· Create a support system.
Get the people around you involved. If your parents would like to help you out during this period, say thanks and accept their help. Having a strong support system will reduce the stress of college application.
Your family and friends will remind you of the things you need to do. Along with this, they can make sure that the little things you need to be able to do your best are covered, such as observing proper mealtimes, following a healthy diet, gathering the necessary supplies, and enjoying some quiet evenings so you can sleep and recharge yourself. They can also get rid of distractions (like your pesky brother whose joy in life is to annoy you, for example) so you can do what you need to do.
A support system will even take care of you when you’re tired; these people can provide you words of encouragement and even treats to replenish your strength and boost your spirit.
· Sync organizational devices or materials for reminders.
Use your mobile phone, computer, schedule boards or calendars, and your personal planner to keep you on schedule. Set alarms for the day that you’re supposed to visit campuses, or when you need to go to the volunteer program you signed up for (something to include in your college essay and interview), or when you should be done with your essays on your phone, smartwatch, and computer (you can download organizational/reminder apps such as Evernote, Focus Booster, Remember the Milk, and 30/30). Also, write your reminders in bold on your calendar and planner.
Syncing all these will help make sure that you don’t miss what you’re supposed to do.
· Ask the people who can help you with actual college application requirements.
These can be your guidance counselor, class adviser, or your favorite teacher, say college admissions consultants. These are the people who can provide you advice about the process as well as check and edit your college application essays, or help you practice for college interviews.
Get in touch with them right away so they can easily fit you into their schedule and you can also work your sessions with them into your own. Other students will be turning to them for help too, so make your life easier by being among the first to ask for their time.
· Remove activities in your schedule that you can do without for a while (and replace them with more relevant activities).
Sacrificing your social life during the college application period will provide you more time for what’s truly important at the moment. If there are activities and events that you don’t really need to attend or take part in, take them off your schedule.
When you’re not completing requirements, get the rest you need so you can perform better in school and keep your stress level low. Or, if you really want to secure your advantage in applying for colleges, take college prep courses; these will add weight to your application.
Preparation and organization are crucial when you’re juggling requirements for your college application, school work, and extracurricular activities. This basic yet smart checklist will help make sure you’re on the right track during college application season.