Surviving Finals and the Home Stretch

By Emma Bittner

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We’re finally here. As much as we hate the last two weeks after Thanksgiving leading up to finals and the end of the semester, we’re so glad it’s here. Now that it’s here, how do we handle it? How do we survive the stress, the late nights, and the finals days trying to salvage our GPA after a semester of naps and procrastination? It all starts with you.


No, I don’t mean you need to drop everything and hit the books (although that would help), but you need to take care of yourself in order to be productive. There are 5 things you need to do to set yourself up for successful finals and managing these next few weeks.


Hit the Hay

Sleep is your best friend. While pulling all-nighters before an exam seems like a good idea, it’s not. You’re going to burn out and dragging the next day. Getting a night of rest before an exam is the best thing you can do. If you don’t know it a few hours before, you probably won’t know it when it’s on the exam. Put the books down and get some sleep.


Write it Out

Writing down everything you need to do will help you make a clear plan of action. Trust me when I say color coding and highlighters make a world of difference. Making a list keeps you focused, and you get to feel accomplished when you cross off what you’ve done. In short, if you write it down you’re more likely to accomplish it and stay on top of what you have to do.


Break Up the Monotony

Study breaks are imperative. Studying for hours on end is going to do nothing but burn you out. Take a break every 30 minutes to an hour, and reward yourself with a snack or a short walk. You want to stay focused and fresh when studying, so breaking into chunks allows you to have time to recoup.


Drop the Hershey’s

Junk food and comfort food is great and all until it comes to finals season. You need to take care of yourself and your body and junk food is not the way to do it. Try your best not to skip meals during cram sessions and swap the chips for fruit or a granola bar. As cheesy as it is, feed your brain it will make a difference.


Log Off

Say so long to Twitter and Instagram. Putting down your phone and picking up the books are going to help you in the long run. As painful as it is to have to put your phone away, it’s the only true way you can stay focused and study. Either leave your phone in your backpack or in your room when you study to reduce temptation. You can even download a few apps to help with this (Offtime, Moment, BreakFree).