For a lot of students, this is the semester (or quarter) back to in-person learning. For me, this adjustment has been pretty difficult. Being the first in-person finals season since 2019, it might be so easy to get swamped by a sudden overload of schoolwork.
During this time though, it’s especially important to practice self care. Whether it be through non-academic lifestyle habits or study habits, it can be really helpful to take action before the stress of finals fully sinks in. Here’s some routines I'm implementing to make sure I survive finals and make it to the holidays.
Change where you study!
Sometimes, after studying in one spot for a long time, a change of scenery can reignite your motivation. After a year at home, people can finally try to take advantage of studying and working in more social environments! Local libraries or cafes can be nice places to study depending on how much noise you prefer.
Being surrounded by other focused people can be incredibly helpful, even if you’re dealing with some social anxiety post-lockdown! And, if you study in a library, there are many study spot options to choose from.
Look up some guided meditations on YouTube or download a meditation app!
Studying for hours on end can be incredibly exhausting. Now more than ever, it’s important to give yourself some alone time. Especially after spending the past year in lockdown, it may be helpful to decompress and reset your social battery.
There are so many options via Youtube, as well as on Netflix. Dedicating a specific amount of time to only relaxation can be great for mental health. And, taking this time to ground oneself is a great way to prevent burnout!
Make sure you’re eating enough!
Similarly to guided meditations, taking the time to eat nutritious food is a great way to maintain energy and prevent burnout. If you’re in a rush, you can eat while studying. Or if you have time, you can also make your food — dedicating a designated time period to cook and clear your mind. Regardless, practicing healthy eating habits is a crucial aspect of self-care!
Lay out a time frame to schedule your responsibilities.
Writing or drawing out a schedule may lift some stress since you have everything laid out in front of you. You could try bullet journaling, or even using online programs to create a list of responsibilities in an order that works best for you. Doing this may assist you in creating and attaining academic goals.
Find a study tactic that works best for you!
If you went to a high school like mine, you might never have learned to study correctly. I was never formally taught how to study, which often added to the stress of preparing for finals. And a lot of my teachers didn’t have the time to assist me through that process. So, before you stress about studying, browsing YouTube to find study tactics might better prepare you.
I like to create a schedule and split my studying into chunks so that I don’t need to rush. I also find that writing out the material I plan to memorize is crucial. Working through these processes in groups also adds some pressure and increases my motivation. Then, I get to studying and self-caring!