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The stress from assignments, projects, labs, papers, quizzes, exams, and midterms (with finals just shy of two months away) we can all stress out a little.

Who am I kidding?

We stress. A LOT.

Here’s a picture of all of my notes and books that I’ve only read SO FAR:

There’s more where that came from, trust me.

Studying for hours on end with minimal sleep or food but still trying to keep your social life afloat by keeping in contact with friends and family can cause anyone to be overwhelmed.

So here are a few tips, tricks, and reminders that’ll help not stress the test (and everything else).

 

Give Yourself A Break (maybe a few)

     Set a time to take breaks. Make an alarm in your phone or computer or tablet that reminds you to chill for a bit. It’ll help keep you motivated by setting goals like “I have to finish reading this chapter before my break” or “I’ll write two more pages for this paper by this time”.

     Giving yourself mini deadlines will help keep you on track, especially if you’re like me and procrastinate. It’s also better than taking lots of small breaks since you can’t really get stuff done if you work for 20 minutes break for 15 minutes then go back and forth. Once you do this the first couple of times, you’ll start to see the difference in how much faster you work.

 

Treat Your Yourself

     Trying to keep yourself awake while reading another boring chapter of another boring textbook or searching through databases for that ONE source, can make anyone want to just say “fuck it” and give up. Your motivation tends to go along the lines of “I’ll get an A if I finish this by tonight” or “I really cannot afford to skip out on an assignment”. Not the best motivation you can have.

     Why not treat yourself? If you’re struggling to do some homework or study for a test, set something aside to be your reward. Reluctant to read a dull textbook? Your reward can be that you’ll let yourself watch a few episodes of a TV show on Netflix or go on Tumblr for an hour or so. Really, really, really not looking forward to doing this group project with people you don’t like? Go out dancing with people you do like after the project is finished. 

     Motivate yourself with things you do like. Earning rewards is a lot more fun than simply fulfilling obligations. You’re doing the same things, but with a different perspective.

 

Recharge

     How many times have you felt completely and utterly drained after hours of studying or pulling an all-nighter or just a long day of classes? Where you just want to snuggle in bed and sleep. 

     [Like can I get a degree in sleeping? After pulling an all-nighter almost everyday of finals week, I swear I slept longer than I was awake for about a week afterwards.]

     Now you don’t have to wait until after your task is done to recharge. You can recharge small amounts while studying.

    One way can be by staying hydrated! Drink water, lots of it! We lose ourselves in working so hard that we forget that our bodies need fluids. And I mean water, not RedBull or soda, just good old fashioned water. If you’re like me who loves to snack while studying, this is a must because most snacks are really salty. 

    If anything, holding a cold water bottle will feel great when your hands are tired of typing or writing.

    Another one of my favorite ways to recharge is just by going outside. Get some fresh air for a few minutes while you check your Instagram or Twitter feed. Feel the sunlight on your face as you watch a Youtube video or read (for class or pleasure). There’s a ton of places on campus like behind the Campus Center, the courtyard at the Vista dorm, Sneaky Park (which is right next to the library), behind StuHan or the benches next to the Hoover building. 

    If you’re stressed or exhausted, a little sun and fresh air does wonders on the mind. It can be just the little boost you needed.

    I’m practically nocturnal, so if you’re like me you can go out at night (BE SAFE). It’s usually fresher than the daytime and there’s even a full moon out tonight.

    You can kill two birds with one stone by walking over to Barb’s or Circle K for snacks. You go outside and you get snacks that can power you through a few more hours.

*If you really want to think long term, get yourself a plant. Water it, name it, play with the soil. Just interacting with nature will boost your mood.

 

Incorporate these destressing tips and you’ll feel a lot better before, during, and after. It doesn’t hurt to try.

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