Enduring the sophomore slump

Second year: That feeling when you complete your first year and make amends to the wrong doings of the past and become a better student. And that feeling when it all washes away thinking of how you still have three years to complete your degree.

It can be awesome to not have a don enforcing a curfew and maintaining a level of quiet and peace throughout the building. But weeks later, I remember falling behind in my classes because of irregular sleeping habits brought on by late and crazy nights.

The more time you spend wasting time, the less time you have to prepare for exams and assignments. And there are two questions that go through every sophomore’s mind: maybe its just me? Perhaps I suffered alone?

The truth is, you’re not alone. Luke Schulz, a fourth year Wilfrid Laurier University student recalled the slump he felt in his second year.

“When I went into first year, I was really enthusiastic about being in a new environment, meeting people and starting my course, but once second year started for me everything just felt the same,” Luke said. “It took a lot of my motivation away because classes and being on campus began to feel monotonous.It is not surprising that for many sophomore students, the change from first to second year is rough and we learn that to maintain balance, sometimes you have to sacrifice comfort and keep pushing. The best way to cute the slump is to find a system which works for you.

“I literally slumped to the point where every day felt routine,” Luke reflected.  “Being able to break that up and make it interesting to yourself is important as a student, because the truth is the only person who’s going to motivate you is yourself. If work’s getting stressful, take a break with some friends. Just keep focused and don’t fall behind into a mountain of stress.”

The sophomore slump is contributed to that moment when students are hit with reality and responsibilities. Anthony, a third year WLU student, found his living situation to be difficult as he felt very on his own.

“Second year is hard. Living off campus there are different rules,” Anthony said.  “In high school you have your parents, first year you have your dons, and second year is all up to you. I think I did it right. I focused on my education enough on what I needed to do, and I partied hard enough to still have a good time.”

Getting used to bills and making sure you have cash to pay them can be rocky when first starting out as well as making sure that you properly feed yourself and don’t starve in the process is equally as important.

One can’t argue that there is indeed a learning process transitioning through first to second year. For some, it takes a bigger toll and leads to mistakes and slip-ups until that tricky balance is achieved. And for those who stick with it and continue to make it work end up reaping the benefits of their own hard work.

Whether that is with regular sleep, eating healthy and staying active, or getting more involved in clubs and with your classes, pushing forward with a positive and realistic mentality is the best recipe for success.

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