10 Risks to Avoid in College to Ensure Study Efficiency

Many people enjoy their time in college. Studying at university opens many different opportunities for career development as you sharpen essential skills for a job and personal development to grow into your own person. You also get more freedom from your parents, so you can explore your path to adulthood as much as you want. However, you should still know your priorities and ensure study efficiency aside from all your other college activities. Many college students start engaging in risky activities that can put their grades and safety on the line. To ensure you’re always in the best condition to keep up your academic performance, here are ten risky activities and behaviors you should avoid in college.

1. Drinking and Driving

One of the most common, but never good, things college students do is drink at parties and drive afterward. There’s nothing wrong with drinking alcohol unless you’re endangering yourself and the lives of those around you. Booze may be unavoidable in college parties, but you should ensure you avoid getting in your car and driving after drinking to stay safe.

Only drink what you can handle as much as possible. Understanding your alcohol tolerance levels can help you gauge if you’re sober enough to drive. If you must drive home, wait a few hours after your last drink. This lets your system get rid of the alcohol and its effects on your body, allowing for safer driving. Consider this measure: for every heavy drink you take, wait two hours to sober up before going on the road. This will help bring down your BAC (blood alcohol concentration) to a safe level for drivers, allowing you to avoid brushes with the law or hiring a DUI lawyer to get you out of legal trouble.

However, having a sober friend drive you home is the best way to ensure your safety. They will be fully aware of their surroundings, letting them drive without any impairment due to alcohol. Or, you can just walk to a nearby friend’s place and stay over to avoid going on the road. By keeping yourself and everyone on the road safe, you can ensure your study efficiency while in college and enjoy your time without risking your life.

2. Cheating

In school, cheating is never tolerated. Every one of your classmates is studying hard on their own to pass their exams and graduate, and you must do the same. Although there are group projects that require a collective effort to pass, most tasks need to be completed without the help of others. Cheating invalidates your and everyone else’s efforts by removing the standards set by your professors for a fair and equal classroom setting. Even if you don’t get caught, you’re only learning how to cut corners, not learning your lessons.

If you understand the gravity of cheating, you must ensure study efficiency to pass your classes using your own skills and abilities. Start by formulating a strategy to improve your grades. For example, setting a study schedule every day will help you get into a habit of learning and manage your time well so you can also spend some of it for fun. You can also reach out for help if you’re struggling. Ask your professors or classmates for tips, or get a tutor to help you through the semester.

You should never have to resort to shady practices when studying in college. Cheating is a quick fix that won’t lead you to a better tomorrow. At the end of the day, your grades are just numbers that cannot fully reflect your value, gifts, and abilities. Your character is what truly matters, and keeping a clean and honorable reputation is more important than passing one exam.

3. Illegal Substances

Young adults are always curious, especially with foreign sensations like getting high. However, trying illegal substances is a risky move. Yes, there’s a culture of young people glorifying drinking and doing drugs, but not everyone can try them without getting addicted. Of course, there’s also all the legal stuff that comes with these substances, including arrests, drug possession bail, court hearings, and probably jail time, which you don’t need while studying and building a future for yourself.

This advice is not meant to kill the joy of your youth but rather to look out for your safety. The consequences of using drugs can affect you in the long term, especially if you start craving the sensation and neglecting other things in your life for drugs. It might seem harmless to try it once, but you don’t want to risk your future just to get high for a short period. Always think before you take drugs.

If drug use is starting to affect your study efficiency, make sure you seek professional help. Try to quit as early as now and build a support system to help you stay accountable. There are also support groups that can let you feel that you’re not alone in this struggle and rehabilitation centers that offer more targeted treatments. Don’t be ashamed to ask for help if you start to feel that illegal drugs are taking over your life.

4. Social Isolation

College is a great opportunity to find groups of peers who share your goals and interests. However, not everyone can easily go out, talk to people, and make friends. These students might be a bit shy or just plain awkward in social settings, which hinders their ability to join active groups. Some just prefer to be alone in their dorm room, close their plantation shutter, and watch Netflix in the dark, but too much alone time can make you an outcast in your university.

Social isolation can negatively affect your study efficiency, cutting off your access to potential information sources like classmates and friends and making you more likely to develop mental health issues like depression. Remember that no man is an island, so you should at least connect with some people to ensure you have someone to talk to at the end of the day. You also want to develop some social skills, which can benefit you later in life.

Instead of isolating yourself (or being isolated unintentionally), try actively socializing, even with just a few select people. Having one or two close friends can be good, especially if you don’t like being in crowds. Start a conversation with that guy who’s always alone in your class, interact with your roommate, or join a student organization where you’ll be forced to socialize. This will help you make the most of your college experience and prevent isolation from holding you back.

5. Poor Hygiene

Although less serious than the other stuff mentioned before, you should still focus on maintaining good hygiene. After leaving home and staying in a dormitory, many students forget to take care of themselves, including hygiene, which is essential for overall health. Some people put off doing laundry and wear used clothes for a few more days; others skip showers to save time; and some don’t even brush their teeth or wear deodorant. This makes you look disgusting to your peers and hinders your study efficiency.

Hygiene is necessary, no matter what stage in life you’re in, so always put it first. Take regular baths, brush your teeth and hair, wear clean clothes, cut your nails, change your bedding regularly, and clean your living space. These basic chores might seem like a hassle, but they’ll cost you more later if you put them off for a long time. You don’t have to be a model of perfect cleanliness, but you must be a decent human who cleans up after yourself. Even just a little effort will get you far.

You should also keep up with your health to ensure your hygiene is good enough. For example, you might need dentistry‘ dental implants earlier than expected if you don’t brush your teeth daily. Cavities can build up inside your mouth and cause pain if you forego this essential and simple task. Ensure you visit your dentist every six months or as often as needed. Their dentistry services will keep you in the best health to tackle every challenge in college.

6. Fire Hazards

With students occupying apartments and dormitories in and around universities, fire hazards are always a big risk because of questionable decision-making. Aside from risky behaviors, some students unintentionally cause fires for a lack of better judgment. Some people light scented candles near windows with curtains, some experiment with microwaves, while others fail to use their hairdryers properly. Your study efficiency can’t help if you’re evacuating your living space in the dead of the night because of a fire.

To avoid fires from ruining your college experience, start by being smart. Your parents should have taught you enough to know that flammable things like papers and fabrics shouldn’t go near fire sources like candles and stovetops. You should also be techy enough to understand that your devices can overheat when plugged in for too long and burst into flames after some time. These common-sense tasks can significantly reduce fire risks when living by yourself.

You can also benefit from staying in an apartment or dorm with fire protection features like sprinkler systems and alarms. This will further protect you and your belongings if a fire starts in the building by putting it out before it can spread to other areas. For added safety, make sure you know the contact details of your local fire department so they can come and help if you encounter a fire elsewhere. Being prepared can save lives.

7. Poor Diet

Like with hygiene, students can neglect their nutritional needs when living alone in a dormitory. Because of the stresses of studying, many people no longer prepare their own food and just go to restaurants or order food online. It’s understandable to get pizza delivery now and then because you’re busy studying for an exam, but if you do it often, you might be stuffing yourself with junk without knowing it.

You should also maintain a good diet to maintain your study efficiency. Balanced meals are crucial in your busy life as a student because you’re constantly moving around, interacting with people, and studying, which can drain your energy significantly. If you want to be able to do these things and still have enough energy to do other stuff you like, focus on eating food items that provide you with the right nutrients, like fruits and vegetables, and avoid products that can slow you down, like chips and soft drinks.

Of course, this is always easier said than done, given that not everyone can afford healthier meals and food items. But many healthier alternatives cost almost the same as your usual junk foods. You just have to find the right grocery stores and restaurants that offer better options for students like you. This can also help you save for more important things like student loans or individual health insurance.

8. Hazing

Fraternities and sororities have this outdated tradition of hazing pledges as a rite of passage, but it has been proven to be a dangerous process that put the lives of many students at risk throughout history. Even if you want to join a group of people because of the possible privileges, you shouldn’t have to go through degrading or harmful initiation as people enjoy watching you being tormented to prove yourself. We can’t fully prevent these dangerous hazing acts from taking place in these organizations, so consider joining other student groups that offer more beneficial advantages. For example, you can join an academic study group where you can develop study efficiency and make friends with other students who want to excel in their fields. You might also find good peers if you volunteer in community drives to clean up rivers or care for shelter animals. Never let the pressure of wanting to belong force you to do things that risk your safety.

9. Overworking

Some people lead double lives in college, being students by day and employees at night. This is an admirable feat that not many can handle, but it can also be a detrimental process, especially if you’re trying to earn money to maintain your access to education. Make sure you always take enough breaks to avoid overworking. Exerting yourself too much can greatly affect your study efficiency by occupying much of your time, draining your energy, and making you sick after some time. Working hard to achieve success is never easy, but it shouldn’t burn you out or ruin your health.

First, make sure you manage your time well. Create a schedule for working and studying with ample spaces for breaks and relaxation. You should also learn to say no at work, especially when you have important school projects to finish on a deadline. This will help you stay organized and avoid asking for workers compensation because your boss gave you too much work. Always prioritize self-care because no amount of money or academic success can replace your health.

10. Credit Card Debt

Finally, ensure you’re also wise with your money. Many students get credit cards to assist with their weekly needs, like groceries and transportation, but fail to pay their dues for various reasons. If you want to maintain good funds while maintaining your study efficiency, avoid as much debt as possible by using your credit card wisely and paying your bills on time.

Indulging in retail therapy is fine when you’re exhausted from all the studying, but make sure you’re not digging yourself a hole in the ground because you’re racking up debt. You can visit your local jewelry store when you want to celebrate a successful midterm exam but don’t splurge your money there every week. You can buy good coffee occasionally but try to find a store that doesn’t cost a fortune. A bit of self-discipline will help you control your spending while still enjoying your time at university.

There are many opportunities for growth and development in college, but there are also so many dangers that you should be aware of. From illegal drugs and alcohol to poor health and hygiene, universities are littered with risks if you’re not someone who makes good life decisions. But if you want to ensure study efficiency to succeed and graduate with flying colors, try to be smart with your finances, relationships, and academics. Stay determined and prioritize self-care, and you’ll enjoy your time without putting yourself at risk during this essential time of your life.

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