More Sunlight, More Studying

The sun’s out, days are longer, and meetings and obligations are piling up. I’ve been as busy and as caffeinated as ever, but at least my homework has been turned in on-time for most of my classes.

I’ve had a few really great afternoons and evening work sessions in the library. My favorite place in Skillman is on top floor on the western side of the library, where there are large windows that allow the setting sun to shine-in, lighting the space and warming the air. It’s cozy and it’s quiet, allowing me to focus in exactly on the tasks at hand.

Energy Use by SectorAt night, there’s a great reading room in the basement with bright yellow walls that reflect overhead lights, creating a room with a warm atmosphere- good for studying, good for the climate with many people sharing space, studying under energy efficient lighting. I had never studied in the library before this semester, and I’m learning to enjoy it. It’s loud and crowded at night, so I’m trying to prioritize my study time more towards the day time, when it is not as crowded or loud.

My grades aren’t necessarily changing that much for the better- I had a really bad performance on a chemistry exam last week because I’ve been spending a lot of time on extracurricular activities, rather than studying. Email has been flooding in, but I’ve spent less time drafting replies by designating time each evening to speed through as many emails and non-urgent tasks as possible. It’s not easy to remember to wait on emails when every 15 minutes, my phone buzzes with new notifications. It’s been nearly impossible, on some days, to set aside large time periods to work on homework during the day, and those are the days I feel the worst because I’m up late and I am not able to set aside personal time either. Screenshot 2014-04-14 20.23.56However, I’m shifting a large amount of time that I previously spent (during the day) doing co-curricular activities, to the end of the day and doing it as efficiently as possible. Working with my boss and my internship supervisor, I’ve been able to focus more of my time on schoolwork, which has been important as other commitments are ramping up. I can estimate I’ve increased my study time, on average, by an hour a day over the past couple weeks. That increase has been almost exclusively on-campus, productive time during the day, in common spaces already using electricity. That means I’m able to reduce energy use in my energy inefficient house. On good days when I’ve finished homework early, I’ve been able to go running, too, which has been incredible in the warmer weather!

I need to keep being careful not to over-extend. I’m sure April is going to take a lot out of me mentally, but I like these new study habits. I feel much better about my academic self, but I have more room for improvement.

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