It’s December! We all know what that means...yes Christmas and winter break, but the thing we’ve all been dreading: finals. By this point, I’m pretty sure we all feel burnt out from the past few months and unmotivated because we’ve been repeating the same schedule over and over again from the comfort of our homes, despite these uncertain times. Well, I’m for sure no expert at constantly being motivated to do work, but I wanted to come through with some tips on how to navigate through finals week while staying refreshed, and of course, while staying at home, since we can’t go to libraries.
Making a schedule beforehand of what you want to accomplish for the day is a real game-changer. Especially for finals, if you plan out your day by writing down what task you want to get done and what time you want to get it done by, you can stay on track for studying. I personally think this helps me a lot in getting work done for each of my classes since it keeps everything organized and holds me accountable. It also helps that each time you finish one thing from your tasks and you check it off, you feel pretty accomplished and productive. Unfortunately, this plan only works if you keep all distractions away, like your phone, since it’s really easy to get sidetracked if you get a message or see something that catches your eye.
Take frequent breaks, trust me you need it! Taking breaks is essential to studying, and if you don’t take them, then that’s the fastest way to burn yourself out. What I like to do is after completing three or four items from my to-do list, I take a 15-30 minute break where I text my friends or go refill my water bottle, but I just move from wherever I’m studying. So, whether it’s just walking around the house, texting a friend, or maybe grabbing a snack, you have to take a study break after a certain amount of time. However, one thing I will say is whatever you do, do not go on TikTok or social media during your break, because even though TikTok, may be a happy place for some, once you go down that hole you’ll never get out and before you know it, two hours will have passed...I’m speaking from personal experience.
Finally, at the end of the day, when you complete everything on your list, reward yourself with doing something nice, like a face mask or a movie night. After a hard day of work, you deserve that time to yourself, instead of drowning in work or contemplating dropping out of school. Being a literal nerd, I like to try to end my day by reading books that I enjoy, while having a face mask on and forgetting that school exists for a couple of hours. So, if that sounds like something that would help you wind down from a hard day of work, try that!
This quarter has for sure been super interesting (to put it nicely) in terms of learning virtually and trying to keep up the motivation, but it’s almost over and we just need to get through finals. Find different ways to stay motivated during finals week, whether it’s through this “survival guide” or finding new ways of your own. Either way, just stay on track, and you’ll be done with finals in no time!