The College Girl's Guide to Avoiding the Finals Freak Out

December 12, 2016

College Studying for Final Exams

It's that time of year again. Final exams are upon us once more, and I, like many other college students, am on the verge of a breakdown. Deadlines, papers, study guides galore are filling up agendas, and there is no stopping them. But before you lock yourself in a closet with all your books, take a few minutes to think about how you might maximize your productivity and ultimately be more successful.

Choose a Practical Study Spot
While it may be tempting to set up camp in your cozy bed or on a comfy couch, you will be much more productive if sitting at a table or desk that has minimal distractions. That's not to say you can't check your phone every so often, but it's important to find a quiet place that won't get in the way of your train of thought. This will ultimately help you to focus more on studying, and less on Pinterest. If you can't get away from the noise, try listening to classical music or plugging in a background noise app to help you concentrate.

Budget Break Time
Diligent studying is important, however it is also important give yourself breaks throughout your studying session. A handy rule to follow is 20 minutes of studying, then a 5 minute break. Repeat this set 4 times, then allow yourself a 20 minute break. These time limits are adjustable, however I have found that this system works well for me. If you have trouble keeping up with these time constraints, an app like Focus Keeper can track it for you.

Make a Daily Agenda

In order to stay on top of things, it's helpful to plan out each task that needs to get done on a day-by-day basis. I even like to organize the activities on my list in the order I plan to complete them. It's a very satisfying feeling to check something off a list (for me, at least), so this (weirdly) helps motivate me to actually get sh*t done. Don't fret if you don't finish everything on your list, but simply move that activity to your next day. Take a deep breath, there's eventually time for everything.

Keep Up With Self-Care
Whether it's eating healthy and working out, sleeping in, or painting your nails, allowing yourself to continue activities that typically keep you happy and healthy is an important step in maintaining your general well-being. It may seem as though you don't have enough time to complete any activity that isn't studying, but realistically you need to do things that keep your mind feeling sane, and your body staying healthy. Even if it's something as simple as setting aside 10 minutes to do a face mask, this step can make an important difference in your finals mindset.

Final exams can be daunting, but these easy steps can lead to a less stressful few weeks. And if this still doesn't seem doable, when in doubt, just find a puppy to play with. Stress = demolished.

What are your final exam tips?

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