Juggling a full course load, not to mention work-study and a social life is tough. You can do yourself a huge favor by taking steps to keep your dorm room clean and organized so that you’re ready for everything on your busy schedule. Your roommate will probably appreciate it, too!
Make the Most of Your Closet
Dorm closets are notoriously small. If you are a soda drinker, hang on to your drink tabs, or just scour the recycling bin for an easy tool to help you use multiple hangers in the same space. This is also a great tool if you want to plan your outfits out for the week and avoid the dreaded, “what to wear?” moments that seem to slow us all down in the morning.
Make Everyday Accessories Readily Available
Do you always wear necklaces, sport sunglasses, or use a headband? Why struggle to find these items everyday? Use a bulletin board to organize your jewelry and prevent tangles, and to keep other commonly used accessories handy for those mornings when you may have hit the snooze button just a few too many times. A word of caution though, if you do have a roommate you never know who may be coming in and out of your room. In that case, make sure to place any expensive or sentimental items out-of-the-way of potential thieves or well-intentioned, careless borrowers.
Keep All of Your Materials for Each Class in One Place
It’s easy to get course material mixed up, especially when you are in your major and many of your classes are around the same general topic. This simple storage strategy will help you to know where all of your materials are for a particular course when you need them. At the end of the semester, store previous class info as needed (may I suggest your parents’ house–they love that!) and start fresh for new classes.
It’s hard to relax when your home is in disarray. Keep your room clean and organized so that nothing can distract you as you hit the books, and so that you can get a good night’s sleep and really show up in your classes the next day. When it comes to sleep, I’ve never seen a dorm room with a night stand. This is unfortunate as I use one for my alarm clock, a glass of water, and of course, my chapstick. Amazon sells a mattress caddy that serves many of the same purposes as a nightstand without taking up so much room. Read a chapter of some non-required reading and then tuck it away neatly before you call it a night.
Be Clean and Organized, but Make Sure Your Room is Still YOU!
As much as I’ve stressed the importance of a clean and organized space, you have to make your dorm room representative of you. A hospital room might be clean and organized, but it probably wouldn’t inspire you to do your best work or offer you comfort after a tough day. Use your wall space. Hang up photos of friends and family and other images that encourage you and make you feel happy. You’ll face a lot of pressure while in school, let your dorm room be your oasis.
About the Author: Danielle Hegedus is a freelance writer for Modernize.com based in Atlanta, GA. For more design ideas and inspiration, head to Modernize.com.