Self-Care on a Schedule: How to Prioritize Yourself When You Just Don’t Have the Time

Happy midterms season Her Campus BU!  We’ve officially hit that point in the semester where 5 a.m. is a normal bedtime and it’s acceptable to visit the Warren Towers Starbucks more than three times a day.  Midterms season is wildly stressful, so people probably aren’t thinking about self-care. That’s understandable, prioritizing your grades and putting everything into your schoolwork is important!  But it is just as important to take care of yourself as you make it through these hellish weeks. In order to help you do that, I’ve made a list of some self-care tips you can try that won’t interfere with your packed schedule. 

  1. 1. Cut back on the coffee

    phone, headphones, and coffee with foam art

    I’m super guilty of drinking coffee like it’s water during midterms season, and you literally won’t find me without a coffee cup in my hand at this point in the year. However, all that caffeine really doesn’t do you much good. STUDY. Plus, all of that caffeine will leave you feeling sick and dehydrated, and it is not worth the price for such minimal gains. I’d be crazy to suggest you give up on getting your caffeine fix entirely, but maybe switch out cup number four, five, and six with water or a low-caffeine tea. Your body will thank you.

  2. 2. Save time for a power nap instead of pulling an all-nighter

    girl sleeping in black and white

    I know the feeling — you just submitted an assignment, you look at the clock, and it feels almost more worth it to power through and start your day than to take a nap for a few hours and wake up even more tired than you are now.  Trust me, the nap is worth it. I get the desire to keep pushing forward and start your day, but you need all the sleep you can get right now. Don’t skip out on the small amounts of rest you’re able to fit in.

  3. 3. Plan your meals

    food in containers

    If you’re having trouble remembering to grab lunch in between assignments and exams, put it in your calendar! This will remind you to eat, and you won’t have the excuse that you just don’t have time for a meal. If your brain registers lunch as an actual plan in your day, it’ll be so much easier to keep up with. Plus, eating will keep your energy up and help you crush every obligation you have to tackle.

  4. 4. Do something nice for yourself while doing your homework

    Plate with Valentine's Day decorations on it, on a nice table

    Too much homework for a self-care night? Do both at the same time! Put on a chill playlist and a face mask, treat yourself to a fun snack, and lie in bed while you do your assignments. If you’re able to focus on work in your room, there’s no reason you should have to choose between self-care and productivity.

  5. 5. Study off-campus

    Amelia Kramer-Coffee Shop Date Booke Glasses Latte Cozy

    Sometimes a change in scenery is all you need to brighten your mood and get things done. Try bringing your work to the Boston Public Library or a local coffee shop. We live in a beautiful city full of perfect study spots, so take advantage of your surroundings and get off campus! Sometimes a little distance is exactly what you need to recharge, and you can only do work in Mugar so many days in a row before driving yourself absolutely crazy.

  6. 6. Take small moments to refresh 

    Summer Girl Hawaii Yoga Hiking Exercise View

    I know this is hard to do when your schedule is so packed, but take whatever small moments you can find to do something for yourself. Watch a goofy sitcom while you’re eating dinner, give yourself fifteen minutes when you get home to mindlessly scroll through Tik Tok, meet up with a friend to study. Find little pick-me-ups wherever you can, and remember that you can’t keep going forever without taking a breath. Everyone needs a moment to recharge, and it’s okay to put off assignments for a few minutes to relax and collect yourself.

  7. 7. Remember that you’ll get through this

    two friends laughing

    As bad as midterms season is, it really puts things into perspective to remember that no matter what happens, you’ll make it to the end. All of these stressors have end dates, and there will be a day (eventually) when you finally get to sleep in. Hold those days in your brain while you crush your assignments and exams, and remember that these all-nighters and crazy days will be funny memories in a few weeks. You’ve got this.

Hopefully, you’re able to try out a few of these self-care tips as you take care of and check-in with yourself over the next couple of weeks. Let’s crush this midterms season, Her Campus BU gals!

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