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How To: Stay Calm and Organized for Finals

Finals week is upon us all.  This is a time where we all are cooped up in the library or the Iowa Memorial Union for hours on end, ordering Jimmy Johns and charging our electronic devices every hour, on the hour—in order to keep our studying going long into the night.  Why do teachers think it is a good idea to stack our weeks?  That we will never know.  But here are some tips that I use about staying organized during this hectic time.

Prioritize.  Figure out what is the most important to you. Label it, bold it in your planner and make it your priority.  Color code things—things in red are urgent, things that you have to do tomorrow.  Things in blue are assignments you don’t have to turn in until later in the week.  When you put everything out in your planner in color, you can start with the most important assignments first.  
Make a list. Lists are critical in times when you feel like your head is spinning.  If you create a list of things you have do outside of school work you can help yourself stay organized.  And, it sure does feel good crossing things off the list when you are done.

Keep your room clean. I know that this sounds silly, but coming home to a clean room after a long night of studying is soothing.  Not having to pick up after yourself after a long day helps distress your body.  Also, how great it feels climbing into a bed that has been made!
Stay healthy. When studying, make sure you pick healthy snacks and drinks to help you maintain your health.  Your health is the most important.  You can focus more on your studies and have more energy when you are not worrying about what cold medicine you have to take next. 
Celebrate.  When you have a day off or don’t have anything due the next day, give yourself a pat on the back for accomplishing everything that you have thus far and take a night off, put your feet up and watch a movie or enjoy a couple of drinks with your friends.  Spending time with friends is a way of de-stressing your body and rewarding yourself for the hard work you have logged. 

Do you have any other tips to help yourself stay calm and organized during finals week?  Share them below!

Deanna is a junior journalism and studio arts major at the University of Iowa. Born in Spring Grove, IL, Deanna has been involved in journalism ever since her high school yearbook editing days. Since coming to Iowa in 2008, Deanna has joined Dance Marathon and Ed on Campus. In 2010, Deanna joined the Her Campus team as a writer and in October became a Branch Manager. When Deanna is not writing you can find her hanging out with her friends, taking pictures, reading novels, playing intramural sports and cheering on the Hawkeyes. Deanna hopes to become a magazine reporter or editor in Chicago or New York City in the future.
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