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Finals week is quickly approaching here at Loyola, and that means everyone is busy with projects, studying, and other of the end of semester work. As finals get closer, it is important to remember to take time for yourself when feeling overwhelmed. It’s really easy to get lost in all the work that is due and the stress that comes with the end of the semester, but there are ways to help yourself. Below, I have listed some ways to combat stress during the finals period, and I hope they will help you take some time to step back. 

1. Take study breaks 

Study breaks are super important. They help you stay engaged with your work/studying, regardless of how much time you have spent already. Without study breaks, it can be hard to pay attention to the assignment you are doing. I know that when I have stared at an assignment for hours on end or continuously studied for a test, I have felt burned out and frustrated. Taking a break allows you to step back and get a new perspective. This is always beneficial in the end because you are giving yourself the time to recuperate. 

2. Plan your day/week ahead 

When I have a lot of work due, one thing I found that helps is planning out what my week and days look like. Not only do I allow time for breaks and social activities, but I am honest with myself about how long assignments will take me. This way, I know exactly what needs to be done and when. It is really helpful to do this, especially now at the end of

the semester, because this is often when professors have final papers, projects, and other assignments due. 

3. Recognize when you need to stop 

One of the things I find most hard to do when I have a lot of work is stoping. I know it sounds weird, but if I have something to do I feel like I can’t rest until it’s done. Until college, I didn’t recognize how beneficial it is to take a step back when you are super tired and burnt out. In the long run, I actually get more work done the next day, instead of carrying on and dragging out the assignment longer. Recognizing when you need to stop for the day is an extremely useful skill that takes work, but it is so worth it in the end. 

4. Reward yourself when you accomplish a task 

When I finish a big assignment or get a good grade on an exam, I usually reward myself with watching a TV show or grabbing dinner with friends before I move on to more work. This helps me realize what I have accomplished and also helps me associate achieving my work with positive outcomes. Of course, I make a decision on what to do based on how much time I have and what other work I need to complete, but I always make time for a reward because it’s deserved. 

I know that final are an especially stressful time, on top of the approaching holidays. This time of year is overwhelming for many, so it’s important to take time for yourself when possible. Implementing the above tips has made a big difference for me and allows me to achieve more in quicker time periods. I hope my advice helps you, and good luck with exams this year! 

Claire Blose is currently a junior at Loyola University Maryland majoring in Advertising and Public Relations and minoring in Marketing. When she is not studying, you’ll likely find her listening to music, exploring the great outdoors, or trying new recipes in the kitchen.
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