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I don’t know about other students, but I have officially hit my mid-semester slump. It doesn’t help that it rains every day, finals are already a month away, and it seems as if I can never catch up in my classes. However, I have found a few ways to battle the burnout I’m facing. If you’re feeling the same way, read on to find out how you can increase your productivity during this mid-semester slump.

Tip 1: Find someone to hold you accountable.

Find a friend and ask them if they would want to study together during the week! It’s a simple tip but it really does work. I recommend going to a library or some other public study space to work. You will be more committed to working because your friend is doing the same and so is everyone else in the building.

I’m fortunate enough that my best friend lives across the street from me on campus. This means that I can bother her whenever I want and force her to study with me. We have fallen into the routine of studying at a campus Starbucks on Tuesdays after my classes as well as going to the library a few nights a week. Even if she has nothing to work on, my friend still joins me at the library to keep me company and hold me accountable for completing my assignments.

Tip 2: Make time for self-care.

What are the things you like to do in the summer or during breaks? When I’m not overwhelmed with school and my campus responsibilities, I like taking walks or going to the gym and I love reading (particularly chick-lit; I’m a sucker for a good grumpy-sunshine romance). It is difficult to find time to integrate these self-care activities into my schedule at school, but I do my best.

I’ve found that having a loose schedule for these activities actually increases my productivity. I try to go to the gym and move my body in the morning a few times a week and it forces me to wake up earlier and be ready for classes when the time comes. I try to remember to bring a book with me that I can pick up when I feel myself growing weary of my assignments. Taking the time to indulge in self-care, even if it’s only for ten minutes, helps reset my mind and focus on my assignments.

Tip 3: Hide your phone.

I’m not kidding. This is the hill I will die on. HIDE. YOUR. PHONE.

I know I sound like a teacher, but the mere presence of your phone is distracting. If you don’t think this applies to you, try it once and get back to me. I tend to either leave my phone charging in another room while I work or I throw it in my bag or even behind my computer screen. Without the screen tempting me, I zone in on my work and knock out my assignments twice as fast as I would with my phone sitting next to me.

No matter how you choose to finish this semester, finish strong. There are only a few weeks left; you got this!!

Kate Bushman

Illinois '24

I'm a current sophmore at the Univeristy of Illinois pursuing a B.S. in dietetics and a double minor in child health and well-being and psychology. I'm a member of Alpha Gamma Delta Sigma Chapter and serve on the AGD Sigma executive council. Additionally, I am a member of UNICEF@UIUC and on the fundraising committee. I have a strong passion for service, education, nutrition and mental wellness, and chick-lit.
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