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Well it’s almost here! The time for constant yawning, library breakdowns, and symptoms of early onset midlife crises- yes, exam season. This near-death experience is an event we students get to endure twice a year. Running on adrenaline and minimal sleep for two weeks straight causes immense amounts of stress that take a toll on our bodies. Here are some super easy tips on how to prepare yourself for this stressful time:

 

1. Overnight Oats

 

Overnight oats are easy to make and a great way to start the day. You can use a mason jar or container to prepare them for on the go in the morning. Oats are a good source of fibre and help improve blood flow throughout the body- meaning enhanced brain efficiency. You can add whatever you want to your oats to make it more flavourful and nutrient packed, for example mashed banana and a spoonful of peanut butter can make this breakfast a good source of protein and potassium. Oats can also last several days in the fridge so you can make several days’ worth of breakfasts in advance, and it only takes a few minutes and ingredients!

*see below for recipe! 

 

2. Layout Clothes

 

One of the last things you want to be doing before you tackle your busy day is scramble to find an outfit. Not only is it stressful, it feels like a waste of time. A basic tip for eliminating this extra stress and giving yourself a few extra minutes of sleep in the morning is laying out your clothes the night before. After you’ve put away the books for the night and are ready to hop into bed, pick out what you plan on wearing for the next day. Who cares if it’s the same sweatpants you’ve worn for the past three days, it’s exam season!

 

3. Delete Distracting Apps

 

This one is actually really hard to do, I won’t lie to you. I don’t know if it’s because I like going on social media or if it’s just a way of avoiding studying, but I’m notorious for being on my phone every ten minutes while I study. Just finished a slide, I deserve a break, is typically how it starts. Then the “break” turns into about an hour of scrolling through who knows what. But you don’t have to delete the apps for the entire exam season, just removing them for the day will help eliminate constant distractions.

 

 

4. Find a Study Spot

 

Weather it’s a cubicle, a stairwell in your residence, your bed, or a café downtown, find what works for YOU. Remove yourself from stressful or chaotic environments and find a calm place that allows you to tune into your studying. If your house or dorm is messy or busy then it may cause extra stress and irritation. The library has quiet floors and study rooms available for booking, or perhaps going home home (students get what I mean) is the best study spot. Find your place, get cozy, and dial in.

 

5. Have Healthy Snacks on Hand

 

Having snacks that are healthy and easy to grab-and-go are essential for surviving exam season. It’s easy to lean towards unhealthy snacks and fast foods but those will cause your body and mind to burn out faster. Two easy snacks that help reduce stress levels and enhance cognitive function are blueberries and nuts. Easy to pack in a baggy or container and great for your health. These snacks will help increase your productivity while studying.

 

6. Set a Bedtime (and stick to it)

 

Another small, yet surprisingly difficult, tip to commit to. Setting yourself a time to put the books away and hit the pillow will ensure that your body and mind get some rest. This is essential to your health and ability to function especially when you’re constantly on the go. Make it an achievable goal; take into consideration when you should pack away your notes and what you will have to get done in preparation for the next day *cough cough* overnight oats *cough*. You owe it to your mind and body to commit to getting a certain amount of rest. Although sometimes you want to keep squeezing in studying late at night, it’ll help you for the time coming if you allow yourself a good sleep.

 

OVERNIGHT OATS RECIPE

Ingredients:

-oats

-hot water

*Use a 1:3 ratio for oats to water.

 

Extras you can add:

-milk

-mashed banana

-frozen or fresh berries

-peanut butter

-shredded coconut

-chia seeds

 

Step 1: Pour oats and any extra ingredients into a jar or container.

Step 2: Add boiling water (cover oats completely plus add additional water because the oats will absorb it overnight)

Step 3: Put your jar in the fridge for overnight (it can last up to several nights)

 

 

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