How to prepare for finals
Finals can be incredibly overwhelming, and we start to get a little scared around this time of the year, when they are only a couple weeks away. But what if I told you that this time you don’t need to be stressed to the max about finals? Here are some great ways to prepare for finals week!
The best way to stay on top of all of your work is to make sure you know when everything is due, so you can prioritize! By planning out a tentative schedule of what you want to get done on a day-to-day basis (whether that be a list in your agenda or a color-coded study plan), you can avoid being overwhelmed by the load and focus on one thing at a time.
Personally, I like to block out my time. Before I begin studying or doing homework, I like to map out how long I want to spend on each subject, and when I will take a break. This keeps on track because I know that if I follow my plan, I’ll get done with the things I think are most important!
I think from time to time we all stretch ourselves too thin and are convinced that we need to keep working. But our bodies aren’t meant to work that way! When you work yourself too hard, you are going to essentially short-circuit your brain.
If you want to be productive, you have to give yourself a break. It’s a weird way to think, but letting yourself take a breath and avoid burnout is the most efficient way to study.
Give your mind a break by watching a short YouTube clip to calm down, eating a healthy snack, or going for a relaxing walk.
Figure out how you study best.
Whether it’s in a group or all by yourself, you can benefit from knowing what the best strategies are when it comes to studying. If you learn better by throwing ideas around and discussing topics, get together with some people from your classes and study together.
If you’d rather study by yourself, make sure to find a quiet spot where you can concentrate on your own thoughts.
Drink water, not coffee
I know it seems pretty obvious that if you’re going to be having study sessions, you should drink coffee to keep you from getting sleepy, but water can actually help you when you’re tired, and it is much better for you!
Water is known to fight fatigue because one of the many things that lead to fatigue is dehydration. Dehydration slows your body down, so it’s best to keep your water intake up!
Go easy on yourself.
Finally, remember that you are only human. By putting more pressure on yourself to do well or get things done, you’re going to stress yourself out much more. The best way to stay calm during this hectic time is to remind yourself that you are doing great, and that you can do anything you set your mind to!
Finals can be a stressful and scary time, but if you take some time out of each day to practice healthy habits for your body and mind, you’ll feel much better. Good luck on finals, Vikings!
Ila Mostafa is a neuroscience major at Augustana College. She hopes to work in a lab doing research on Parkinson's Disease. In her free time, Ila enjoys reading, watching movies, and spending time with her family.