Day one, week one, term one, just gone. I had to get out of bed this morning, still your plaintive cries I can hear them from here and believe me your sympathy is much appreciated. But the fact of the matter is that, generally speaking, History students don’t really “do” contact hours. Oh there’ll be some here and there, and its fun to watch them pass you by (sometimes it’s nice to have a reason to leave the house), but what with my dissertation module being largely self study last year I haven’t really had to go to University on any regular basis in, oh… ever.

I jest naturally, although far more than anyone who happily records “student” in the job title section of any form should have the gall to do, and yet the chain may be broken. As a Postgraduate student I shall have some work to do and, as this week’s inductions have reliably informed me, I shall have to find time to do it. And so mornings rear their ugly heads, because frankly I’m no good for much more than lounging on the sofa come the evenings. No, it is most definitely decided, and I must be strong; if I want to fit in the gym, studying and work (as the perfect modern girl must do) then the morning must, for want of a better phrase, become part of my day. He is not a welcome addition.

Next problem. Students should attend their classes and lectures right? Quiet at the back, they most certainly should. Equally however I need sleep to be productive; that’s science that is, and with this in mind I’ve arranged some handy tips on getting up with minutes to spare… without looking like you have. After all presentation is very important.

Nearly done…

Rule 1) A full face of makeup is NOT required every day. I remember reading somewhere once that a woman’s makeup only stays as it was applied for 20 minutes after they arrive at work. How anyone can be that precise I do not know, I may even have invented this myself, but it is certainly true that applying and maintaining make up takes time in the morning and upkeep throughout the day. A young, beautiful, confident woman such as you doesn’t need to waste the time, so apply only what you need and no more. Drink plenty of water, eat well and stay active in the hope of delaying the hour when you nostalgically recall, “I didn’t used to have to bother with all this”. In my experience women under the age of 30 usually don’t need a full face of foundation everyday – it makes them look like they’re hiding something. It’s dull advice I know but pertinent.

 

Rule 2) Have clean clothes ready in advance. Believe me there’s no worse time to rummage through your cupboards for clean socks than when you’re already running late and they are literally the one thing you can’t find. We’ve all been there and it isn’t fun. In addition the laundry bin, or bag, or corner of your room is for laundry – options for day wear do not lie within.

Rule 3) Do put a little bit for thought into what you’ll wear (even if you do this the night before), now I’m not advising a long, involved plan; and the aim certainly isn’t to compete with everyone else, but choosing something comfortable, which you feel looks good, can act as a massive confidence boost in seminars and lectures. Just a little effort now and then can go a long way.

Alarm clocks can be fun, this one won’t break should you get… “grumpy” in the mornings

Rule 4) Know where you need to be, and when; I cannot emphasize this enough because, whilst it’s the guilty pleasure of many to sneak some extra time in bed ultimately what we’re aiming for is the complete removal of any possibility of being late (the difference between a guilty pleasure and, well… just guilt). In this respect a diary and an alarm clock must stand as two, indispensible, University accessories.

Classes are a requirement of University life and ultimately they should be about your academic development. Turning up feeling fresh, prepared and comfortable can make a massive difference in enabling you to feel awake and actually absorb the information. Currently I do not know of any institutions that accept attendance in spirit; but it’s not enough just to crawl into a given lecture only to find a new bed amongst the pews.

Ultimately it’s all about organization. Just a little bit of forward planning can save you an awful lot of stress dashing to things that you’re already late for. As invigorating as a morning run can be you’ll hopefully find that walking into lectures prepared, and with time to spare, means that you’re engaged enough to miss out on a lot less too.

Remember, it may be possible to take the organisation principle a little too far…