All college students know how difficult it is to juggle our responsibilities all semester long. But it seems like during finals week we sacrifice all our free time and stop taking care of ourselves to focus on studying. The best way to get ahead of your stress and do your best on your exams is to plan out your finals week so you don’t have to sacrifice your self-care for a whole week. Check out these tips for taking care of your mind and body during finals week!
Keep a consistent sleep schedule.
We’ve all been there before: holed up in the library until 3 A.M. the night before an exam. Trust me, you will do better on your exam if you get a good night’s sleep. Try your best to schedule six to eight hours of sleep into your day and plan to study around those hours. I am personally most productive in the morning, so when I have a lot of studying to do I like to go to sleep early and get up early so I can utilize my morning for schoolwork instead of cramming all night long. Based on your own preferences, figure out the best time to get some sleep and your body will thank you during that 8 A.M. exam.
Don’t miss that workout.
If you have a fitness routine, stick to it during finals week! I know you’re probably exhausted from school work, but working out is a great way to clear your mind and relieve stress so it makes for a great study break! After a good workout you’ll feel energized and refreshed, so head over to the fitness center for a quick gym or yoga sesh and you’ll feel great afterwards. You might even feel motivated to get back to studying!
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It can be difficult to stick to a regular eating schedule during finals week because you might end finishing your schoolwork late and end up at Sbarro or Smashburger or whatever is still open late at night, but try to fuel your body the right way! Hofstra’s dining options have plenty of healthy meals to take advantage of, so take study breaks and actually eat a good meal instead of putting it off until the end of the night. And if you’re hungry during a study session, carry some healthier snacks with you like granola bars and fruit to snack on while you work. Your body will be thankful to be given healthier food during a stressful time.
Take study breaks.
Working several hours straight through with no study breaks is enough to give anyone a headache. Work in short increments of time because you’ll likely be more productive and you won’t feel as stressed if you’re not studying for an exam or writing a paper all in one sitting.
Give yourself time to relax.
Designate time each day to your studying and schoolwork and then give yourself time to relax at the end of the day! Choose something you like to do and take give yourself time to do it, whether that’s doing your makeup routine in the morning, watching a movie, working out, playing an instrument, hanging out with your friends, doing a relaxing skincare routine, etc. And don’t cut feel guilty about doing things other than studying during finals week, because after all that studying you deserve time to relax. If there’s an activity that makes you feel calm and happy, schedule that into your week! It’s important to designate times to studying, but you don’t want to slave over your work 24/7, so give yourself time to relax and have fun.
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The key to surviving finals week is making a good schedule ahead of time. Schedule out your week so you know when you have to study for exams or write final papers. After you know when you need to complete your work, schedule in hours to relax, sleep, work out, etc. You’ll feel calmer during the last weeks of the semester if you don’t let your finals take over your life, just do your best and you’ll feel confident about those exams!