A new school year is an exciting time: return to friends and favorite places, a fresh start in classes and maybe a promising new job or leadership role. September is the perfect time to set New Year’s Resolutions tailored to your goals for the academic year to come. In no particular order, below are some categories you should consider when deciding on your focus for the year.

Finances
For some students, whether they’re going to make rent and which job they’re working tonight is always at the forefront of their minds. For others, “broke” is a perpetual state, or funding from parents and previous savings make money a non-issue. Wherever you land, you can get better at managing money, and everyone could stand to have financial goals.

Some financial goal ideas include:

  • Save $[amount] every [paycheck/week/month] or by [date/event]
  • Develop a [budget/savings plan/investment]
  • Learn financial skills by [reading specific book/completing workshop/researching online]
  • Build up [emergency fund/travel savings/retirement]

Culture
College is a time ripe with opportunities for travel, reading, debate, new experiences and leisure in general. Whatever your interests, setting specific goals can help you to become a more cultured and interesting person.

Your cultural goals might look like this:

  • Develop [language] skills by [measurable outcome/specific practice regimen]
  • Travel to [place] and experience [architecture/people/language/whatever]
  • Commit to [regular volunteer project or schedule]
  • Read [number of books/specific title(s)] by [time interval/date]
  • Learn about [cultural practice] by [specific activity/research]

Skills
Perfect a few new skills each year and your resume will be fantastic by graduation!

Skill-based goals could be:

  • Begin to learn [language/skill] via [activity/research]
  • Practice [skill] at [interval]
  • Expose myself to [experience/hobby/culture/mentor] to learn about [skill]
  • Achieve [skill level]
  • Accomplish [activity requiring proficiency] by [interval/date]

Relationships
Your significant other, best friend, family and potential friend circle will really benefit in the long run if you prioritize these:

  • [Method of contact] [person] [interval]
  • Attend [event] at [interval] and [talk to new people/do something different]
  • Invite [person/category of people] to [event] at [interval]
  • Do [nice thing/random act of kindness] for [person] at [interval]
  • Use [communication technique] to improve relationship with [person]

Spirituality
Spirituality isn’t typically considered when making goals, but can you really be well-rounded, cultured or relatable if you only consider what’s right in front of you? Whether you’re an avid churchgoer, someone who was once religious or just curious, there are spiritual goals that can work for you.

  • Attend [spiritual event] at [interval]
  • Read [spiritual work] at [interval] or [amount]
  • Do [spiritual activity] at [interval]
  • Try out [spiritual practice]
  • [Invite friends/accompany friends] to [spiritual activity]

Academics
Everybody wants a higher GPA, but the best academic goals look at how you’re going to get there. Some ways you can do that include:

  • Seek out [tutoring/instructors/smart friends] with [skill/subject/class]
  • Spend [amount of time] [studying/reading/writing] [interval]
  • Use [study method] for [class]
  • Complete [honors project/extra reading]
  • Turn in everything on time
  • Pull 0 all-nighters

Personality
Can you really change your personality? Who knows, but you can certainly have goals that make the best parts of your personality shine.

  • Use [strength area] to accomplish [thing]
  • Reduce [bad habit] by [method/specific amount]
  • Create [new habit] by [method/specific amount]
  • Help [person] by using [strength area]
  • [Read book/do activity] to improve self in [specific way]

These goals are only the beginning of the amazing things you can accomplish this school year.