Tips for surviving finals week

By Iris Marzolf

Finals week can be the most stressful time of the year. With deadlines and tests bombarding us every which way, it’s not the best feeling to be a student. Just remember, everyone is stressed and overwhelmed right there with you. You’re not alone, and you will get through this.

Here are four tips to make your life during finals week easier.

Take care of your body and your mind: Getting exercise keeps your blood flowing and your mind and body alert. If you don’t have time to exercise, it’s important to eat well. It may be easiest to grab chips and other snack foods, but they don’t supply quality energy. Sure, you can get through finals without nutritious food and exercise, but they can help.

Pure focus: Minimize distractions while studying, and if you’re prone to getting distracted by your phone or computer, try studying without them. Put them in a different room. You’ll be able to cover more material with an uninterrupted workflow. Be cautious when taking breaks — it’s tempting to check your phone “just for five minutes,” but that can easily turn into hours wasted watching cat videos. While you need to focus, studying one subject for a long period of time exhausts the brain. Stick to a couple of hours at a time for better retention.

Don’t procrastinate: This is hard to do because it involves planning ahead and being ahead on work. Even the most seasoned students can fall victim to not having enough preparation time. But the earlier you start studying and the sooner you finish final projects, the better off you will be. Being prepared helps eliminate stress. If you’re used to doing all your work at the last minute because you feel you do best under pressure, forget that strategy. Cramming is not effective. Most of the time, you’ll end up stressed and anxious, and you won’t be able to remember the information properly.

Get enough sleep: This is arguably the most important advice. Is it 2 a.m. and you have a test in six hours but you still haven’t covered the material? Go to bed. The best thing you can do for yourself is to be rested. Your brain can’t function as well when you’re fatigued. It’s harder to learn and remember information. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep during finals week so your brain can operate at maximum capacity.