{shortcode-346226cffd7f66008b8ea2c3391a4f5e9818ddf1}Now that the excitement of the FDOC is over, we unfortunately have to break the news to you: there’s a whole semester of classes ahead of us now. Apparently, we all attend an academic institution where the goal is to…learn? But worry not, we’ve got you covered. Here are some of our tips and tricks to ensure that we’re all going to be academic weapons this semester.

Read your syllabus

Just do it. You’ll thank us and yourself later. Now you can stop worrying about writing a five-page essay for the discussion post that only counts for participation points. You can also know when to start studying for the exam that counts for 50 percent of your final grade…

Use your Google calendar

What’s not to love? So many colors. Be obnoxious about it. “I’ll put you in my GCal.” “Yea, just send me a GCal invite.” “If it’s not in my GCal, it doesn’t exist.” Sure, you may get a few eye-rolls here and there, but hey, just embrace the GCal culture. It really will make life so much easier.

Don’t overcommit yourself

Right now, you still remember the version of you that had enough time to binge all nine seasons of The Office twice over winter break. You just had a month to yourself and now that you’re back, homework still hasn’t picked up yet. But just you wait, in three weeks, you’ll be slammed with work — so don’t say yes to nine clubs, three comps, seven jobs, one remote internship, two lab positions and eight classes. Again, you’ll thank us later.

Bundle up

Unlike the fall semester, the spring semester is filled with snow storms, hail, slush, and your hair freezing when you go outside right after a shower. Is this your first Cambridge winter? Refer to Flyby’s Guide To Surviving Your First Real Winter right now. Make sure to wear several layers, check the weather before you go out, and save your toes from the cold with warm, fuzzy socks.

Self-care comes first

From yoga to face masks to walks by the Charles River to going out for a bite with some friends, self-care can look like a variety of things. Whenever you feel like you need it, take some time for yourself. Take that mental health day. When it gets hard, remember to prioritize yourself and your inner calm first. The pset will get done, the extensions you asked for will be approved, and Flyby will always manifest the best for you.

Go outside (even if it’s cold) and catch some sun (even if there’s snow on the ground)

Yes, yes, we know. We started the semester with three different types of precipitation on the first day. And yes, we know. New England winter doesn’t exactly scream sun. But sunshine gives you serotonin, serotonin makes you happy, and happy people don’t fail their classes — they just don’t. :)

Whether you’re a first-year eager to bounce back from the fall or a senior scrambling to finish their thesis, we hope that with these tips, there won’t be anything you can’t face this semester (except maybe finding affordable SZA concert tickets). It’s time to get out there and ace this semester!