10 New Year’s resolutions for successful students

Goodbye 2019, hello 2020!

The New Year has begun, and millions of people all over the world are setting their New Year’s resolutions – a list of personal changes or goals to help make 2020 their best year yet.

With each New Year comes a new opportunity to start afresh, make positive changes, and become the best ‘you’ you can be.

For students, it’s the perfect time to set goals that will help you achieve study success. They’ll also help make your academic year more productive, organised and fun!

Need a bit of inspiration to get started? Here are our top 10 New Year’s resolutions for students:

1. Get out more


When was the last time you hopped on a bus or train and visited somewhere new?

With so much to do on campus and the vibrant buzz of university life all around you, it can be easy to get trapped in a bubble. Before long, you’ve been studying in the same place for years without ever truly exploring it. You could be really missing out!

And I don’t just mean the nearest town or city, either.

Travel just a little further afield, and you might discover something really special – like the beautiful Alnwick Castle and Gardens, which are only an hour away from Newcastle University.

2. Do it NOW!

“Procrastination is the thief of time,” English poet Edward Young once said – and he was right!

Imagine how much more productive you could be if you stopped putting things off?

Start small by employing the rule ‘if it can be done in less than 5 minutes, do it now’. Before you know it you’ll be handing in your essay a week before the deadline. Well, maybe…

3. Lend a hand


It’s unlikely that you’ll ever have so much free time in your schedule again once you’ve left university, so fill the space by volunteering. Not only will you meet new people, give back to the community and make a difference – you’ll also develop new skills and build your knowledge. All of this will look great on your CV!

4. Switch off

In a world of likes, followers, tags, retweets and chat streaks, it’s easy to spend countless hours glued to your phone trying to keep on top of it all. Constant notifications from countless apps are distracting at the least – and damaging to our mental health at the worst!

Try cutting down on your social media use by switching off your phone when you study, read, hang out with friends or relax at home. You’ll find it easier to focus and engage, both of which are essential skills for study success.


5. Find balance

Sleep. Study. Socialise. The three ’S’s of university.

It’s often said that you can never do all of them sufficiently, but that doesn’t have to be the case. You just need to find a balance.

Make it your goal to get a certain amount of sleep each night, and combine studying and socialising by organising group sessions with your friends.

6. Broaden your horizons

Try a new sport, join a society, make a new friend, discover a talent. University is the perfect place to experiment, with access to so many clubs and societies via the Student Union. Whether it’s judo, acting, rowing or knitting, you’re bound to find something you enjoy!

7. Move more

This is a pretty popular New Year’s resolution whether you’re a student or not, but students are notorious for slacking when it comes to fitness.

It might seem like a lot to fit in workouts around your studies, but exercise is proven to stimulate the brain, improve mental health and even make you happier!

You don’t have to join an expensive gym – walking or jogging is free, or you could try a fun team sport with your classmates.

8. Get cooking


Do you find yourself cooking the same things day in, day out? Or maybe you hardly cook at all?

This New Year, challenge yourself to cook one new dish each week, and before long you’ll have a huge range of new cooking skills up your sleeve.

You could even turn it into something fun to do with friends by teaching each other your favourite recipes from home, or take it in turns to host themed dinner parties!

9. Keep in touch

With so many friends living close by, it’s no wonder we often forget to keep in touch with those outside of our university circle. Getting in touch with friends and family from home – even just a Skype call once a week or a few messages here and there – will put a smile on your loved ones’ faces.

Don’t forget, university isn’t forever, and you’ll be glad you kept in touch once you’ve graduated!

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10. Study smart

What kind of learner are you? Do you respond best to sound, visuals or movement, or perhaps a mixture of them all?

We’re all individuals, so it’s important to know that not all study methods will work for everyone.

Colour coding is perfect for visual learners, but you might find that recording your notes on your phone and listening back to them is the best way for you to learn.

Make it your goal to experiment with different methods of studying and revising – try teaching what you’ve learnt to someone new, memorising facts by turning them into a song, or asking a friend to test your knowledge!


Are you ready to make your own resolutions now?

Find out how a group of students broadened their horizons by taking part in social enterprise projects. Or, find out how a university society became home away from home for Lorenzo.

If you want to study abroad, head over to our website and find out more information on applying, student life and more!

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Alice Dunbar

Hi, I'm Alice and I'm one of the Content Editors at INTO. I love how studying abroad brings different cultures and nationalities together, helping make the world a more exciting and compassionate place. In my spare time, I enjoy crafts, blogging, cooking, documentaries and singing along to musicals – loudly!

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