Most adults have fond memories of their college days, the tone of which can range from that of "Animal House" to something more akin to a monastery.
Most people will find that the best experience lies somewhere in between, and that a night that goes overboard can pretty heavily impair you the next day as well.
Remember that you are paying an extraordinary amount of money that is an investment for the rest of your life, so it’s important to make the most out of your time at college. You can do that by striking a balance between your social life and your academic life.
Figure out your peak studying hours.
Some people’s creative thinking comes alive early in the morning, and others find that they can piece ideas together more readily in the afternoon or late at night. If you know when you think most clearly, you can set aside that time for working and adjust social plans around it.
Make your study time enjoyable.
Find your favorite corner of the library or lounge and put in headphones. Chew gum or sip bubbly water as you work to keep your brain online. The work doesn’t have to be miserable!
Set your priorities.
Things change from semester to semester, and even week to week. What is most important right now? If you have an exam coming up that determines whether you can continue with your chosen major, you’ll probably want to focus on that and opt out of some nighttime activities.
Pick and choose which parties — and people — are worth your time.
This is a good rule that will allow you to make the most out of your social time. If you can’t stand the people around you, you may drink more than you’d planned. Stick with people you trust, whose company you enjoy, and venture from there. If the room doesn’t suit you, move on.
Set some ground rules.
It may sound silly, but setting rules for yourself before you go out can be really helpful, and nobody else has to know. Your rules could be things like “I don’t do tequila shots,” or “no sex until the third date.” Making it an “official” rule makes it more likely you’ll follow it, even when your judgement is already impaired — saving you from the headaches and humility that follow a rough night out.
Drink water. Seriously.
Some people keep a large water bottle nearby and try to alternate between alcohol and H20. Even keeping water near you will fill in those moments when you’d like to have something in your hand, and staying hydrated will go a long way towards making sure you can still function the next day.
Take a break from the parties.
There are plenty of social things to do without hiking to the nearest frat house.